Hindutva organisation Bajrang Dal reportedly conducted an arms training camp for a week in Sai Shankar Educational Institute in Ponnampet village, Kodagu district in Karnataka.
Many karyakartas participated in the event. There was a huge pooja to mark the event. The event was organised by hate-monger Raghu Sakleshpur.
Many photos and videos have been doing rounds on social media for quite some time. The photos show smiling karyakartas holding a knife-like structure. There is also a photo of karyakartas where they are seen training with rifles.
Despite Siasat.com‘s several attempts to contact the Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) IPS officer M A Aiyappa over the same, no response has been received, so far.
However, the police informed news agency PTI that they have not received any complaints so far.
A Bajarang Dal activist told PTI that the participants were trained in self-defence, but no arms were distributed as alleged in some quarters.
Authorities of the school, where the camp was held, said the premises was being used for ‘Prashikshana varga’ training for several years and were unaware of training with arms.
Congress leaders expressed concern over the training camp.
AICC in-charge of Tamil Nadu, Puducherry & Goa and MLA Dinesh Gundu Rao in a tweet said, “Why are BajrangDal members receiving arms training? Isn’t training in firearms without a proper license an offence? Isn’t this a violation of the Arms Act 1959, Arms Rules 1962? And Why are @BJP4India leaders openly attending and supporting this activity?”
Congress MLA Rizwan Arshad tweeted: “At this age, most young men set out to achieve dreams. In K’atka, Bajrang Dal is destroying young lives by training them to unleash violence in the name of religion. This needs to be stopped at any cost”.
(The story has been edited by the desk with inputs from PTI)