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Bajrang Dal activists seek to justify acts by cow vigilante groups


New Delhi: Amid reports of high-handedness by cow vigilante groups, Bajrang Dal activists have sought to justify such acts, saying they will go to any extent to protect cows, which is like a mother to them, and cited Dadri lynching incident as an example of such backlash. A top VHP leader also said that when the law and the constitution is not protected by those in power and there is laxity, “such incidents will happen”.

“Hundreds of our volunteers have been sacrificed. That is why if there will be sacrifices of cow protectors, those involved in smuggling and slaughter of cows will not get spared. Dadri is an example of this. Cow is like a mother to us and there can be no compromise on cow. If we have to give our sacrifice to protect the cow, we are ready,” Rajesh Pandey, national convener of the Bajrang Dal, told a news channel. Asked if he was ready to take the life of anyone in this regard, he smiled back saying, “Dadri incident is an example of this.”

Pandey also said that a sense of fear has to be created so that people do not indulge in smuggling and slaughter of cows in the country. “If they fall to this extent of killing and smuggling the cows, which are like mother to us, then we will have to create some kind of fear and pressure, as not even a single cow should fall into the hands of slaughterers,” he said.

VHP general secretary Champat Rai said that if the government and law enforcement agencies do not enforce the laws relating to cows or deliberately ignore them, then incidents of violence will happen.

“If I consider cow as my mother and my 5 friends also do so, then we are a cow protection force. What recognition does it require. There is no need for any recognition. I also feel if government and its employees do not strictly follow the law and constitution and deliberately allow its violation with regard to cows, then such incidents will happen,” he said.

Several non-BJP parties condemned the remarks made by leaders of VHP and its youth wing Bajrang Dal and alleged this is the result of the patronage they received from the Modi government.

Hitting out at BJP, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said those “creating mayhem” in the name of the “scared cow” are “promoted, prompted and supported” by the ruling party. He said this is the “biggest insult to the softest and kindest animal in the world – cow”. “Those who make tall claims and thrash people in public in cow’s name are the ones who have caused 90 deaths in two days in Jaipur’s biggest cow shed,” he said.

JD(U) leader K C Tyagi hit out at the cow vigilante groups, saying they are the attackers and questioned the silence of the ruling BJP and the Prime Minister on the attacks on Dalits. “The PM’s silence on dalit killings is dangerous for the country, Constitution and democracy,” he said.

CPI(M)’s Brinda Karat said in the name of cow vigilantes they are destroying the country and are continuing with their attacks as they are freely backed by top leaders of BJP and RSS and enjoy their patronage. “Instead of banning their activities, top leaders of Modi government are actually defending what they are doing and that where the problem lies,” she said.

Another CPI(M) leader Mohammed Salim said this mindset has been developing ever since the Modi government assumed office because of the support provided by the RSS and VHP to these people. “They have got a business model with a political motive,” he said, accusing those running cowsheds of indulging in sale of cow meat.

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