The Uttar Pradesh government put in place a massive security build-up across the state and  arrested hundreds of VHP activists and seers from different parts of the state for trying to carry out the ‘84 kosi parikrama yatra’.

VHP leader Praveen Togadia, soon after his arrest, slammed the UP government for its crackdown on a ‘purely religious ritual’ and accused the Samajwadi Party of minority appeasement. As a mark of protest, VHP would stage sit-ins across the country on Monday, he said.

Senior VHP leader Ashok Singhal, who was arrested after he landed at the Amausi airport and packed off to Nawabganj bird sanctuary guest house in neighbouring Unnao district, slammed Akhilesh Yadav government for the crackdown.

Noting he had come to be part of a peaceful ritual of saints but was prevented to go to Ayodhya, the 87-year-old leader also warned the state government not to play with the sentiments of Hindus. He also said that Lord Rama would no longer live under a tent and demanded that Parliament passes legislation for construction of a grand Ram temple in Ayodhya.

"Ram Lala has won the court's battle and now the parliament should pass an early resolution to make a grand temple," he added.

Besides Togadia and Singhal, the police administration arrested over 500 people including former Union Minister of State for Home Swami Chinmayanand, Nritya Gopal Das of Ram Janmbhoomi Trust, a former BJP MP Ram Vilas Vedanti and sitting MLA Ram Chandra Yadav.

Singhal, who was not allowed to come out from the airport, asked, "Why am I being arrested, what crime have I done...They should tell me. There is Mughal rule in Uttar Pradesh, where saints and seers are being stopped from worship". He asked the government to review the ban,

Samajwadi party spokesman Rajendra Chowdhary claimed that VHP's yatra was a ‘flop-show’.


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