All India Confederation of SC/ST Organisations
For Immediate Release
World Religious Freedom Day Marked at India's National Capital
Dharmrakshak Shri Dharma Sena Leaders Arrested For Religious Defamation
SC/ST Confederation Demands Ban on Bajrang Dal, VHP and RSS
New Delhi, October 14, 2008
All India Confederation of SC/ST Organisations marked World Religious Freedom Day in India's national capital today with a large protest against communal violence and demanded ban on Bajrang Dal, Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Rashtrya Swyamseva Sangh (RSS). A Dharmrakshak Shri Dharma Sena leader arrested for defamation charge at the demonstration grounds, Jantar Matar.
Hundreds of Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe government employees celebrated World Religious Freedom Day. Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, the architecture of the Indian constitution left Hinduism and converted to Buddhism fifty-two years ago on Oct. 14, 1956 in Nagpur, Maharashtra. Thousands of Dalits joined him in an effort to become free from caste oppression.
Mr. Vijay Singh, a member of Dharmrakshak Shri Dharm Sena was arrested today at the Parliament street police station on charges of defaming literature and a poster displayed near the rally.
Members of SC/ST Confederation urged Mr. Balwinder Singh, Assistant Sub-Inspector, who was on duty and in charge of the rallies in Jantar Mantar, to arrest Mr. Vijay under section 295A of the Indian Penal Code for defaming another religion and creating enmity among religious communities. Later Mr. Vijay was taken to Parliament street police station.
The slogans displayed in the poster were from a booklet called, "Yesu main Sietan hai" – meaning "In Jesus there is Satan" by Mukesh Jain, President of Dharmrakshak Shri Dharm Sena. Another poster displayed read, "Jesus is a Murderer," "Jesus is terrorist," and "Jesus came to destroy human beings."
Dr. Udit Raj, Chairman of the All India Confederation of SC/ST Organisations said, "Police officials on duty should have quickly arrested Mr. Vijay Singh at very sight of the inflammatory slogans and display of picture. If this display of inflammatory and defamatory literature was done about Hinduism by Christians or other religions, many people would have been beaten."
Yesterday, NIC met in Balyogi Auditorium, Parliament House, New Delhi and this was inaugurated by the Prime Minister. Dr. Udit Raj was the first speaker and at the outset he said that casteism is sometimes more dangerous than communalism. Since caste and identity divisions and rhetoric's was suggested by Dr. Udit Raj at the time of finalization of agenda, therefore, he was most appropriate member to speak on the danger of caste politics. Caste politics outweighs development, education, health and also encourages the leaders of the caste to do anything in order to capture the power. Caste politics has indirect bearings on society and its ill affects like poverty, health, corruption, illiteracy, have far reaching impact. Communalism affects individual and their properties.
Dr. John Dayal, Secretary General of the All India Christian Council, along with Christian members of Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR) joined the rally. He said, "The victims of anti-Christian violence in Orissa, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and other parts of the country are mostly from a Dalit background. They need the freedom of religion which was courageously demonstrated by Ambedkar."
As the protestors marched in large group along Parliament street, they shouted, "Ban Bajrang Dal," "Ban VHP," and "Ban RSS."