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VHP gives military-training to Bengal youths to ‘defend’ themselves

VHP gives military-training to Bengal youths to ‘defend’ themselves
Volunteers undergo training at the camp. Pic: Hindustan Times

Kolkata: Around 150 Bajrang Dal volunteers got military training by Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) last week in Bengal’s Sunderbans.

The Hindutva ideology based Bajrang Dal is a youth militant organisation of VHP. The youths were selected from various parts of Bengal during one-day camps, organised in November and early December.

Kushal Kundu, the VHP’s assistant secretary for south Bengal, was made the in charge of conducting ‘Yuva Shaurya Training Camp’. “The objective is to ensure Hindus are prepared to defend themselves against aggression from members of other religious communities, besides helping the army in the case of external aggression,” said Kundu.

Trainees underwent exercises such as crawling through a narrow, muddy trench covered with a heap of leaves, and then using a rope strung across two trees 30 feet apart to move from one tree to another. They then had to climb a 30 feet-high bamboo structure before having to walk on a single bamboo pole placed horizontally 15 feet above the ground, quotes HT.

Apart from this week-long drill, there was training to defend oneself with dummy swords. They were also trained on how to load and unload the rifles, use air guns, as well as on using caliber bolt action rifle.

The food provided to them was basic, that included lentil soup, vegetables and rice. There were also sessions for ‘intellectual and spiritual development’. The trainees paid for their own clothes and transport and contributed another Rs 350 per person for food.

The volunteers had to wear a white shirt, blue shorts with the signature saffron scarf and had to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’.

The training would start at 5 am and end at 10.30 pm throughout the week. The volunteers had to sleep on straw beds. They also had to wash their own clothes and dishes, along with cleaning the camp daily. The camp ended on December 23.