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Upendra Bharti | HENB | New Delhi | Aug 13, 2016:: In a fierce attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader and its International President, Dr Praveen Togadia on Saturday accused him of “dividing Hindus” as he criticised the former for condemning cow vigilantism in a very foolish way.
Addressing a press conference here, Togadia gave “a six-point programme” to Modi and demanded that he “withdraw his advisory”. He questioned Modi’s facts and demanded statistics on how many cows had died of consuming plastic—a statement the Prime Minister had made in his address at Town Hall last week.
Togadia claimed that there had been a 44 per cent increase in beef exports in the past two years—since the incumbent central government came to power—despite the Prime Minister’s claims to stop the practice.
“Dossiers should have been made of terrorists in Kashmir and Muslims who kill cows, not of the gaurakshaks,” Togadia claimed, accusing Modi of “profiling cow-loving Hindus”, as he referred to Modi’s promise to have dossiers made on cow vigilantes.
“We had expected that cow-slaughter would be stopped,” Togadia said, adding that he “had no face to show anyone” after Modi’s statement and even claimed that he had received “abusive” phone calls demanding to know why Modi made such a remark.
“You have shamed us,” he said, accusing Modi of “dividing Hindus” by linking cow vigilantism to the Scheduled Castes. He also claimed that the PM’s statement “gave a clean chit to cow butchers”.
Expressing “utmost dissatisfaction and agony” over Prime Minister’s remarks, he also questioned as to why the “head of the country” has given a clean chit to “cow butchers” and victimised cow protectors, who have been his avid supporters and helped him getting elected.
Rather than appreciating efforts of Hindus to save cows and initiating a sincere dialogue with “these simple, non-fancy gau-rakshaks”, Modi had termed 80 percent of them as “anti-social”, he said. That was an “insult not only of Mother cow but also of Hindus and all those who gave their lives for protecting cows”, he told reporters.
“I am not asking Hindus to take law in their own hands but am asking the Prime Minister to find a legal way out so that we can come to know when there will be a law to stop the slaughter,” he said.
In his interaction with the citizens at Town Hall to mark the second anniversary of the launching of MyGov portal on August 7, the Prime Minister had said: “I get very angry at these ‘gau rakshaks’. They indulge in anti-social activities at night and turn cow protectors in the day. I want states to take action against them.”
Dr Togadia said that even under the British rule cow protectors and the larger Hindu society never faced such insult and humiliation. The VHP leader vowed to stand by all gau rakshaks and their families, if the government cracks down on them.
“We expected an advisory to stop cow slaughter, but Prime Minister you have broken the hearts… it is better to commit suicide now since we cannot go out to protect cows,” Togadia said, his voice choking with emotion as he addressed TV cameras.
Togadia demanded that the government should immediately bring a legislation to stop cow slaughter in the country, as it is still allowed in a few states. He said “the Prime Minister should withdraw his speech against cow protectors and also withdraw the advisory sent out by the home ministry to states to take strict action against those who create trouble in the name of cow protection.”
Though he refused to go into what would follow if the government did not withdraw its stand against gau rakshkas, he hinted at a movement backed by “sants” to resist it. “The Prime Minister is a childhood friend… I am confident he will pay heed to what I am saying,” Togadia said, when asked whether he felt the government will listen to the VHP demands.