As RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat arrived on a four-day Bihar visit, opposition RJD-Congress alliance accused him of creating communal tension in the state even as the ruling BJP-JD(U) alliance leaders countered the allegations as “vote bank politics”.
Bhagwat arrived in the Bihar capital by air on Tuesday afternoon and drove straight to the RSS office in the city’s Rajendra Nagar area from where he was scheduled to leave for Nawada, about 120 kms from Patna.
Bhagwat will attend RSS’s Shiksha Varg programme in Nawada, during which he will interact with students from various educational institutions in the age group of 15-25, and apprise them about the activities of the Sangh, a senior functionary said.
He is scheduled to return to Patna on May 25.
Commenting on the visit, RJD spokesperson and MLA Ejya Yadav alleged Bhagwat heads an organisation involved in many communal riots and swords were distributed among rioters during his last visit to the state and it remains to be seen whether he was planning to get “guns and tanks” supplied to this cadre this time.
He remarks were in reference to the communal conflagration that had erupted in several districts of Bihar in March this year around the Ram Navami festival when large processions were taken out wherein some youths had raised slogans carrying swords.
Senior Congress leader and MLC Prem Chandra Mishra demanded a ban on Bhagwat’s entry into Bihar, saying it is not a mere coincidence that the entire state was rocked by communal riots after the RSS chief’s last visit to the state.
Mishra said Bhagwat is scheduled to spend three days in Nawada, which was one of the districts rocked by sectarian clashes, and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar should take note and act on this.
Hitting back at the opposition, Union minister and senior BJP leader Giriraj Singh — the party’s MP from Nawada — said Bhagwat heads an organisation which has “no parallel when it comes to making sacrifices in national interests”.
Singh said those opposing Bhagwat’s visit are “merely interested in vote-bank politics”.
JD(U) spokesman Ajay Alok also said that those making a hue and cry over the RSS chief have never cared about the minorities and have treated them just as “vote banks”.
Alok said Chief Minister Nitish Kumar is sensitive towards maintaining harmony and the opposition “does not need to lecture” the government.