BJP, Congress obfuscating on rightwing terror: activists

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Mumbai, Aug 23 (IANS) Both the BJP-led NDA and the former Congress-led UPA governments have been “obfuscating on the issue of cracking down on Hindu terror organisations despite evidences available against them”, a group of civil society activists said on Thursday.

Uniting under the umbrella organization of Bharat Bachao Andolan (BBA), they have demanded an immediate ban on the Sanatan Sanstha and arresting its founder Jayant Athavale in the wake of the unearthing of arms and explosives in Palghar’s Nala Sopara town and other parts of the state by the CBI and the Anti-Terrorist Squad of Maharashtra.

The BBA statement was issued by prominent activists like Tushar Gandhi, Nikhil Wagle, Noorhejan Safia Niyaz, Charul Joshi, Varsha Vidya Vilas, Jyoti Badekar and Feroze Mithiborwala.

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The Sanatan Sanstha first emerged as a suspect in 2006 during the Nanded blasts, then in 2008 when they threw bombs in Thane and Vashi, for which there members were convicted, and again in Goa in 2009.

The BBA said that on 2011, then Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan submitted a 1,000-page dossier but the Centre did not start the legal process to ban it.

Again in 2015, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis too sent a report, but there was no action from the present NDA led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Over the past so many years, the Maharashtra ATS and its former chief, the late Hemant Karkare, and the National Investigation Agency (NIA) have uncovered terror networks of rightwing Hindutva groups like the Sanata Sanstha, Abhinav Bharat, Hindu Janjagran Samiti, Shri Shivpratisthan Hindustan, Hindu Govansh Raksha Samiti, Ram Sene, Hindu Raksha Sena, Hindu Vidhidnya Parishad and others.

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“Thus, this was never about some fringe groups, but the terrorism and assassins from within the ranks of mainstream of these organisations. The term Hindutva terror was also discussed across the nation as the networks were uncovered,” the BBA added.

Referring to the latest instances, they pointed out that the recent terror plot unearthed in Nala Sopara (Palghar) with its tentacles spread across Maharashtra and other states clearly show that “there is an agenda to provoke massive series of communal riots and mayhem.

“We as a nation must unite to counter the scourge of terrorism and thus pressurise the government and the investigating agencies to crack down on all such terrorist organisations. If not, we will witness even more writers and intellectuals who will be assassinated, and more innocent people killed in terror attacks,” the BBA statement said.

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