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VHP, RSS get onto hectic lobbying

delhi Updated: Sep 08, 2011 23:16 IST
Vikas Pathak
Vikas Pathak
Hindustan Times
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The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) have begun hectic lobbying to oppose the Prevention of Communal Violence (Justice and Reparation) Bill, 2011, drafted by Sonia Gandhi-led National Advisory Council (NAC).

Upping the ante against the Centre on Thursday, VHP president Ashok Singhal threatened a movement against the proposed legislation: “If this bill is passed in Parliament...non-Hindus will have the power to terrorise Hindus... Now the only course open is to start a big movement.”

The Sangh Parivar's prime opposition: the bill -- which seeks to protect “groups” from communal violence — in clause 3 (a) of chapter 1 defines the victim groups as “religious and linguistic minority, in any state in the Union of India, or Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes”, thus not only ruling out the majority community as a “victim” but treating Dalits and tribals as separate from Hindus.

“Including SCs and STs and not other Hindus seems a deliberate ploy to divide the Hindu society,” senior RSS functionary Ram Madhav told HT.

The VHP has already contacted 350 MPs requesting them to reject the bill. Ram Madhav even met Tripura CPM chief minister Manik Sarkar last week to seek his support.

“We also want that as an NAC chief as well as UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi should ask the government not to go ahead with the bill.”

A recent meeting of RSS-affiliated organizations at Ujjain in MP had discussed the bill as a key issue apart from "corruption”, and general secretary Suresh (Bhaiyyaji) Joshi said: “This will strike at the roots of national unity and communal harmony. It is important that government rejects the said bill in totality...”

“The bill makes the Hindu the perpetrator of communal violence. It is a discriminatory law, against the spirit of the Constitution, a danger to national integration, social cohesion and the federal structure of the Constitution,” Madhav said.

The RSS’ political affiliate BJP has also mounted repeated attacks on the bill.