As the BJP-led government in Goa Wednesday ruled out banning Sanatan Sanstha suspected to be behind the murder of rationalist Govind Pansare, a senior minister Wednesday defended it claiming the organisation worked for spirituality and propagation of Hinduism.
Factories Minister Dipak Dhavalikar conceded that in fact his wife was “a seeker” of Sanatan Sansha, which has come under the scanner after Samir Gaikwad, one of its members, was arrested by Maharashtra police in connection with the murder of Pansare.
“Just because one of the seekers is arrested in a murder case, why is there a demand to ban the entire organisation? Sanatan Sanstha works for spirituality and propagation of Hindu religion,” Dhavalikar told PTI. Earlier in the day, Goa Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar had said the organisation would not be banned. Dhavalikar also said that his wife Lata had found peace of mind after becoming a seeker. “We are not associated with Sanatan Sanstha. But my wife is a seeker and she has told me that she finds peace after doing `sadhana’ there. Do you think she should not go where she is feeling peaceful?” he asked.
Dhavalikar, who heads Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, a BJP ally, and whose elder brother Sudin is also a minister in Goa government, said he had been closely monitoring the activities of Sanstha but never found it to be preaching violence.
Congress leader and former home minister Ravi Naik tried his best to ban Sanatan Sanstha after accusing it of a role in 2009 Margao bomb blast, but the case could not stand scrutiny by the Union Home Ministry, Dhavalikar claimed.