Plea in Kerala HC alleging illegal encroachment in temple by RSS

Mass drills and weaponry training conducted by Hindu outfits a grave concern
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On June 19, a petition was filed in the Kerala High Court alleging illegal encroachment of the Sree Sarkara Devi Temple in Thiruvananthapuram by alleged members of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) for the purpose of conducting mass drills and weaponry training. The aforementioned petition was filed by two devotees and neighbouring temple residents who claimed that the alleged RSS members’ actions are causing great anguish and trouble for devotees and pilgrims visiting the temple, particularly women and children. The plea has been moved through Advocate S. Nikhil Sankar, and was being heard by the Division Bench comprising Justice Anil K. Narendran and Justice P.G. Ajithkumar tomorrow.

The petitioners claim that the respondents engage in illegal activities in the temple without permission from the appropriate authorities. The petitioners argue that the RSS and other members of the organization are using tobacco products on temple grounds, endangering the cleanliness, purity, and divinity of the sanctum. “The unpleasant smell emanating by the usage of the above products by the 6th and 7th respondents along with their henchmen is causing great discomfort to the devotees visiting the temple, especially senior citizens, women and children,” the plea stated, as reported by the LiveLaw.

Furthermore, the petitioners claimed that the respondents yelled loud slogans as part of their mass drill/weaponry training, disturbing the temple’s tranquil and serene ambience.

The petitioners also claimed that on March 30, 2021, the Devaswom Commissioner had issued a circular ordering all officers of the board involved to stop/prevent mass drills/weaponry training on the board’s premises. Following that, the petitioners filed a complaint with the temple’s Administrative Officer, but no action was taken, as provided by the LiveLaw.

It was further submitted that the Devaswom Commissioner issued another circular in unequivocal language demanding for strict enforcement of the previous circular, but violations continued, according to the petition.

The petitioners have thus asked the Court to hold the respondent authorities’ duty bound and responsible for ensuring that the temple and its premises are only used for devotional purposes and to protect the petitioners’ right to worship, which is guaranteed under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution.

Hindutva outfits- firearm training, sword fighting and trident distribution

Far-right extremist and fascist outfits have been indulging in organizing various arms training camps, sword fight event and trident distribution event since many year all over India. Several reports have surfaced where RSS backed and related fringe outfits, such as the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Bajrang Dal, have been organising such illegal event and camps in different parts of the country, disguising them as self-defence activities for Hindus. It is essential to note that it’s not just the men who are trained in “self-defence”. Durga Vahini, another unit of the VHP, organises similar camps for women. 

In the beginning of June, Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) had reported upon the military style parades being organised in Rajasthan, all of which were allowed by the Rajasthan police. As per the CJP’s report, out of the total of 33 districts in Rajasthan, in at least 13 districts the Bajrang Dal and Vishwa Hindu Parishad had been hyper active, organising their brand of Trishul Diksha Samaroh. In the last few months, multiple reports on such incidents have surfaced:

  1. Chittorgarh, Rajasthan: On May 30, a video surfaced on Twitter whereby Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Durga Vahini had organized the firearm training for Hindu girls. In the video girls were seen donning an orange dupatta and firing from rifles at empty glass bottles and towards the end of the video the girls in training were seen chanting ‘Jai Shree Ram’.
  2. Jodhpur, Rajasthan: On May 26, a training session was organised by Durga Vahini, aimed at training young girls in self-defence and martial arts. In the video the girls can be seen using rifles, sticks as well as being taught martial arts. The representative of Durga Vahini, while speaking to the reporter of ABP Live, said that the training was being conducted in using sticks and rifles as well and that the training session would last for 7 days in Saraswati Vidya Mandir and was being imparted to 200 girls.
  3. Shajapur, Madhya Pradesh: Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Durga Vahini organised a weapons training camp for minor and young girls calling it “Shourya Prashikshan Varg” (Bravery training class) from May 7 to May 14.  It could be seen on the video that these young girls were given a rifle in their hands as well as long sticks and taught to fight with them on an open ground. This was organised on Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Hostel ground in Shujalpur and more than 500 girls were given the training.
  4. Nagpur, Maharashtra: On May 2 and May 9, two trident distribution event were organised by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal extremist outfits, where the participants had owed allegiance to Hindutva. At these events, in addition to distribution of tridents amongst men, hate speeches where delivered exhorting Hindus to take up arms. In one of the hate speeches delivered here, the speaker had given openly giving calls for using the said trishuls to stop “love jihad” and religious conversions.
  5. Multiple cities and districts, Rajasthan: A total of 7 incidents came to light in the month of April where tridents were distributed at events organised by Bajrang Dal and VHP.
  6. Mount Abu, Rajasthan: A weapon training program was organised by the Bajrang Dal from April 13-15, 2023 known as the Rashtriya Shikshak Prashikshan Varg (National Teachers Training camp). Videos also surfaced from the camp, showing men getting trained in how to use a rifle. It was alleged that the training was being given under the leadership of far right leader and known hate offender Pravin Togadia.
  7. Vadodara, Gujarat: On February 28, VHP and Bajrang Dal distributed trishuls to over 130 young men. Viral Desai, of VHP Southern Gujarat, while speaking to the media, said that the trishuls were distributed to Hindu men after giving them complete information about it and what is the necessity of a trishul in Hindu homes. The organisers further said that the young men were administered an oath to use the trishuls responsibly and to worship it at home and use it to protect Hindu society, women, cows and saints.

VHP and Bajrang Dal leaders have often said that Indian democracy “needs to be run by Hindu values, though all communities are welcome to live in India”. These Hindu extremist groups have an infamous track record of unleashing brutal violence against Muslims, and have been illegally conducting firearms training camps for their members across Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Madhya Pradesh states since many years. Giving weapons is the hands of those violent Hindu supremacists who have been threatening the minority community of Muslims with mass slaughter and genocide is a grave cause of concern.


Maharashtra: CJP files complaint with Nagpur police against two trishul distribution events, organised by Bajrang Dal & VHP

‘Trishul Diksha’ in poll bound Rajasthan, a matter of grave concern

“Protect religion, women and cows,” right wing groups tell the youth, hands them Trishuls

Arms training to minor and young girls in Madhya Pradesh

Arms training allegedly conducted by Bajrang Dal in Mount Abu

VHP leader promises free ‘licenses’ swords, knives and sticks after ‘training’



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