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Chorus to ban RSS gets louder after action against PFI

On the other hand, India's leading human rights group, Association for Protection of Democratic Rights demanded the withdrawal of the ban imposed on Popular Front of India (PFI) and its affiliate organisations Read More

Thursday September 29, 2022 10:16 AM, ummid.com with inputs from IANS

Chorus to ban RSS gets louder after action against PFI

New Delhi/Bengaluru/Patna/Hyderabad/ Kolkata: Opposition parties cutting across the party lines are demanding a ban on Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) - the right-wing Hindutva outfit that they alleged is involved in terrorism and anti-national activities.

'A political gimmick'

The first to come out with this demand soon after the Narendra Modi government in New Delhi imposed five-year ban on Popular Front of India (PFI) and its affliates Wednesday was the Congress party. Others, including Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), CPI (M), All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) and ritghts groups joined soon later.

Congress MLA Tanveer Sait dubbed the ban on the PFI as a political gimmick by the BJP.

Meanwhile, Priyank Kharge, Congress Media in-charge and MLA, slammed ruling BJP saying that the decision to ban came too late and it was the failure of the intelligence department.

'RSS worse than PFI'

In wake of the ban on the Popular Front of India (PFI), RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav said that every organisation, including the RSS, which are responsible for creating communal hatred in the country, should also be banned.

"I firmly believe that the RSS should also be banned in the country. It is worse than the PFI. The previous governments banned the RSS twice. Earlier, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel had imposed a ban on RSS in the country," he said.


JD-U national President Lalan Singh demanded that the Narendra Modi government clarify on what basis the ban was imposed on the PFI.

"Centre should clarify on what basis it has imposed a ban on PFI. I want to wait for the clarification of the Centre," he said.

'A draconian ban'

AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi on Wednesday said that the Centre's ban on Popular Front of India (PFI) cannot be supported and asked the government why has it not banned right-wing majoritarian organisations.

The Hyderabad MP said while he has always opposed PFI's approach and supported democratic approach, this ban on PFI cannot be supported.

The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) president believes that a draconian ban of this kind is dangerous as it is a ban on any Muslim who wishes to speak his mind.

 

"The way India's electoral autarky is approaching fascism, every Muslim youth will now be arrested with a PFI pamphlet under India's black law, UAPA," tweeted Owaisi.

"How come PFI is banned but organisations associated with convicts of Khaja Ajmeri bomb blasts aren't? Why has govt not banned right wing majoritarian organisations?," he asked.

Also Read | RSS behind several bomb blasts: Sharad Pawar

He said actions of some individuals who commit crime does not mean that the organisation itself must be banned. He pointed out that the Supreme Court has also held that mere association with an organisation is not enough to convict someone.

"Muslims have spent decades in prison before being acquitted by courts. I have opposed UAPA & will always oppose all actions under UAPA. It runs afoul the principle of liberty, which is part of basic structure of the constitution," he wrote.

APDR demands withdrawal of ban on PFI

Mranwhile, India's leading human rights group, Association for Protection of Democratic Rights (APDR) Wednesday demanded the withdrawal of the ban imposed on Popular Front of India (PFI) and its affiliate organisations, by the Union Home Ministry.

According to APDR General Secretary, Ranjit Sur, PFI, with its declared objective to work for the achievement of socio-economic, cultural and political empowerment of the deprived, downtrodden and the nation at large, claims to work with minorities and historically marginalised.

Is RSS linked with terrorism

"Its political wing, the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) has participated in elections from the level of Parliament to the local bodies and some of its representatives are being elected as well," Sur pointed out.

'Ploy to terrorise Muslims'

He also said that APDR strongly believes that every organisation in this country has the right to uphold its ideology which can be contested ideologically and politically only.

"Banning an organisation can never be the answer to an ideological and political issue, and the Union government should issue a white paper on what it has achieved in past by banning organisations and what can be achieved by this latest banning. Therefore, in irrevocable terms, APDR demands immediate withdrawal of the banning notification and unconditional release of all political prisoners arrested in this connection," he said.

On the similar lines, the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) General Secretary, Dipankar Bhattacharya, while interacting with the media persons, said that the ban on PFI is a ploy to "terrorise the Muslim population in the country".

'A factory of patriots'

The BJP leader on the other hand are defending the RSS and slamming those demanding action against its patron organisation.

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai reacting to Siddaramaiah's demand to ban RSS, stated:

"Like the cat always eyes on mice, Siddaramaiah will be waiting for an opportunity to blame the RSS."

"Whatever may be the development, he will link it to the RSS. He can't pursue politics if he doesn't take the name of RSS. Is there any grounds to ban RSS?" CM Bommai questioned.

"Siddaramaiah had taken back cases on the PFI workers. Does he need any more evidence?" he asked.

"Should RSS be banned for its patriotic activities? RSS gives succor to people in need. They are struggling to preserve the culture and heritage of this country. Should they be banned for these?" CM Bommai asked.

"The RSS is a patriotic institution and it is imbibing a sense of patriotism in this country. It would be meaningless to demand for its ban," he added.

Also Read | Time for Hindus to introspect, says Pracharak who details afresh RSS, BJP bombings plan

Hitting out at RSS critics, BJP OBC Morcha's national General Secretary and state spokesperson Nikhil Anand said:

"There is a competition going on among the parties involved in the Grand Alliance to become the champion of secularism. By speaking against the Sangh, Lalu Ji wants to satisfy the sentiments of Muslims to strengthen his vote bank."

BJP MLA Basanagouda Patil Yatnal has stated that the demand to ban the RSS was an exaggerated demand.

"RSS is a factory from which patriots will come out. RSS has never indulged in violence and collected explosives, bullets," he maintained.

 

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