Wednesday, May 31, 2023
Support Our Journalism
HomeIndia'We didn’t even spare Gandhi': Hindu Mahasabha ‘leader’ threatens CM Bommai over...

‘We didn’t even spare Gandhi’: Hindu Mahasabha ‘leader’ threatens CM Bommai over temple demolition

An FIR was filed against Hindu Mahasabha leader Dharmendra for allegedly misusing the organisation’s name and identity following a complaint by leader of another faction of the outfit.

Text Size:

Bengaluru: The storm over the demolition of a temple in Karnataka’s Nanjangud has snowballed further with two factions of the Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha on either side of the latest controversy.

Addressing a press conference in Mangaluru Saturday, an office-bearer of the Hindu Mahasabha accused the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of backstabbing Hindus, saying even “Mahatma Gandhi was not spared in a bid to protect Hindus”.

“We didn’t spare Gandhi ji, what do you amount to then? If Gandhi ji could be assassinated to condemn atrocities on Hindus, do you think we won’t consider the same for you? Please remember it will become very difficult for you Basavaraj Bommai, B.S. Yediyurappa and Endowments minister Shashikala Jolle,” General Secretary of Hindu Mahasabha’s Karnataka unit Dharmendra said.

Dharmendra, who had unsuccessfully contested on a Hindu Mahasabha ticket in 2018 assembly elections from Mangalore South constituency, was announcing a massive protest to be staged by the right wing outfit in Mysuru Wednesday condemning the demolition of the temple, before going on a tirade against the Karnataka government and leaders of the BJP.

Warring factions

The press conference landed in the eye of a storm later, not for the controversial statements but because another faction of the Hindu Mahasabha filed a complaint against Dharmendra and his companions accusing them of misusing the organisation’s name, identity and letterhead.

The Mangaluru police registered an FIR Saturday against Dharmendra and seven others for criminal conspiracy, forgery etc among other charges following a complaint filed by Lohit Kumar Suvarna, who identifies himself as the state president of the Hindu Mahasabha. A copy of the complaint as well as the FIR is with The Print.

“Dharmendra along with Rajesh Pavithran had been suspended from the party in 2020 for objectionable behaviour. They are fraudulently using the organisation’s name and letterhead,” Suvarna told The Print, insisting that he had been appointed as the state president of the outfit in 2019.

However, Rajesh Pavithran contented the claim. “I am the state president of the Hindu Mahasabha and we are officially registered with the Election Commission. We even contested on eight seats in the previous assembly election. On the contrary, Lohit Kumar Suvarna was expelled from the party for anti-party activities. He is fraudulently claiming to be an office bearer. We have filed complaints against him earlier as well but no action has been taken,” Pavithran said.

He also produced copies of the Karnataka State Election Commission’s notification dated 9 September 2020 classifying Hindu Mahasabha as a registered but unrecognised party contesting in the urban local bodies elections.

However, Devendra Pandey, identified as National General Secretary on the official website of the Hindu Mahasabha, told The Print: The Hindu Mahasabha has been divided into six factions at the national level. The issue of who really is the President is pending before the Election Commission of India and before Courts. Until that is resolved, we won’t be able to decide which faction is the real party.”

A day after the contentious press conference, the Mangaluru Police have taken three members of Hindu Mahasabha into custody. “We have detained three persons — Dharmendra, who addressed the press conference, Rajesh Pavitran and Prem. The role of Rajesh and Prem are being ascertained. Dharmendra has been arrested since he is recorded issuing the threat,” N. Shashi Kumar, Commissioner of Police, Mangaluru city told ThePrint.

Also read: Temple demolition in BJP-ruled Karnataka sparks embarrassment, political frenzy, protests


Subscribe to our channels on YouTube & Telegram

Support Our Journalism

India needs fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism, packed with on-ground reporting. ThePrint – with exceptional reporters, columnists and editors – is doing just that.

Sustaining this needs support from wonderful readers like you.

Whether you live in India or overseas, you can take a paid subscription by clicking here.

Support Our Journalism

Most Popular