RJD, Congress oppose RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat's Bihar visit

Patna,May 23:Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat reached Bihar on Tuesday amid protests from the Opposition block, which demanded a ban on his entry into the state, while the ruling JD (U)-BJP dismissed their qualms as "vote-bank politics".

After a brief stay at the Sangh office in Patna, Bhagwat headed for Nawada, where he is scheduled to participate in an event of Sangh's "Shiksha Varg", where he will interact with students and youngsters in the 15-25 age group as well as tell them about the ideology and activities of the organisation.

Bhagwat's latest four-day visit is his fourth to the state in the last one year and has triggered a political storm in Bihar. His visit is strongly opposed by the Congress and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leaders.

Congress MLC Prem Chandra Mishra said, "Bhagwat's entry should be banned in Bihar. The last time he was here on a 10-day visit, the entire state witnessed communal tension and riots around Ram Navami." He added that CM Nitish Kumar should take note that Bhagwat was headed to Nawada, which was among the districts affected by communal clashes earlier this year.

Ally RJD echoed similar sentiments with party MLAs Bhai Virendra and Ejya Yadav alleging that his organisation had distributed swords to the rioters on his last visit and it could not be dismissed as a mere coincidence.

The ruling BJP-JD (U) combine, however, claimed that it was a free and democratic country in which Bhagwat could visit anywhere. "The organisation Bhagwat heads is one which is supreme in making sacrifices for national interest. Making such remarks against him is not only improper but shows that people are indulging in vote-bank politics," Union Minister and BJP MP from Nawada Gririraj Singh told reporters on Tuesday.

BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain asked if one would require an NOC from them for travelling within the country.

The JD (U), which had once given the slogan of "Sangh Mukt Bharat", supported the saffron party and party leader KC Tyagi said that everyone has a right to express themselves in a democracy and those who are opposing Bhagwat's visit had once even opposed Jai Prakash Narayan and Karpoori Thakur.

Bhagwat will return to Patna on May 25, following which he will leave for neighbouring Uttar Pradesh.



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