20, Feb 2023 | CJP Team
The man enjoys government provided security; he has allegedly recently said that eliminating “Muslim jihadis” is the only way to establish a Hindu Rashtra. Bajrang Muni Das, against whom Citizens for Justice & Peace (cjp.org.in) had filed a complaint with the Uttar Pradesh Director General of Police (DGP) in April 2022, is now heard speaking less than a year after being arrested on the charge of inciting Hindus to kill and rape Muslims. Clearly the man enjoys immunity from serious prosecution and action.
Bajrang Muni Das’s purported comments mirror a twelve-month long trend of many north Indian mendicant’s heartland sadhus calling for a genocide of Muslims. The latest remark attributed to him came a day after another Madhya Pradesh seer clearly patronised by chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan appeared to suggest that next year’s general election would lead to the establishment of a Hindu Rashtra.
CJP is dedicated to finding and bringing to light instances of Hate Speech, so that the bigots propagating these venomous ideas can be unmasked and brought to justice. To learn more about our campaign against hate speech, please become a member. To support our initiatives, please donate now!
We know that India was a peaceful country in the past and its peace was destroyed after the entry of Muslims. The Muslim jihadis must be eliminated to automatically turn India into a Hindu Rashtra,” Muni, who is out on bail, appears to say in a video circulated widely on social media on Sunday, February 19.
This repeat offender, Bajrang Muni Das is chief priest (mahant) of the Maharishi Shri Laxman Das Udasi Ashram in Khairabad, Sitapur, situated one hundred kilo metres north of Lucknow. He was arrested on April 13 last year for allegedly urging Hindus to kill Muslims and abduct and rape their women. He was immediately granted bail on April 24 after “apologizing” for the remark in court but told the media after his release: “I have no feeling of guilt for what I said.” Clearly his was a worse than paper apology but the authorities in UP have believed its shallow assurance.
Muni confirmed to local reporters on Sunday that the latest video was genuine, reports The Telegraph. “We cannot wait for India to become a Hindu Rashtra, we have to speed it up and that is possible only when we finish off those with a jihadi mindset,” he is purportedly heard saying in the video.
This mendicant, clad in saffron robes, moves around with two Provincial Armed Constabulary guards — a privilege many sadhus in the state have enjoyed since Ajay Bosht/Yogi Adityanath became chief minister in 2017. Muni’s guards have not been withdrawn after his arrest.
Paramhans Das, an Ayodhya-based sadhu, often quoted in defence of the politically significant Ram temple at Ayodhya however, told the media: “I spoke to Bajrang Muni over the phone, and he told me he was talking only about jihadi Muslims. I support his statement and call on the country to listen to him.”
On Saturday, a day before, February 18 Dhirendra Krishna Shastri, a self-styled godman based in Chattarpur, Madhya Pradesh, told his followers: “Prepare for next year and also prepare to see India as a Hindu Rashtra.” He seemed to be suggesting that India would be declared a Hindu Rashtra after the 2024 general elections. The backbone organization of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the mother outfit so to speak, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) will complete a centennial completion of its year of birth in 2025!
Shortly after the speech of Dhirendra Krishna Shastri of Chattarpur, chief minister Chouhan made what appears a personal, religious visit to Shastri’s ashram and met him. Ironically, Shastri has claimed he has nothing to do with politics and had merely voiced a popular demand for India to be declared a Hindu nation. Several sadhus had been arrested — and later granted bail — a year ago for allegedly urging genocide against Muslims at the infamous Dharm Sansad conclave in Haridwar, Uttarakhand, in December 2021.
Around the same time, a video had emerged of a “Yuva Vahini” event in Delhi where participants took an oath to “fight, die for and, if necessary, kill” for the establishment of a Hindu Rashtra. The Delhi police, who report to the Centre, sought to close the case saying no hateful comments had been made about any religion. Adityanath, himself the mahant of a temple in Gorakhpur, had as a BJP parliamentarian held processions during UPA rule demanding India be declared a Hindu nation. He has been reticent on the subject since becoming chief minister.
In April 2022, CJP had in a written complaint to the Director General of Police demanded that “more stringent sections in FIR against Bajrang Muni Das: CJP to UP DGP CJP’s petition urges expansion of complaint to include rape threats”. The complaint, that may be read here, had pointed out that “that the criminal complaint lodged against ‘Mahant’ Bajrang Muni Das is limited and should actually contain more serious and comprehensive sections of the law, Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) has urged in a separate complaint with the Director General of Police, Uttar Pradesh, that this be expanded and the investigation be non-partisan.”
The ‘Mahant’ Bajrang Muni Das from Khairabad, Uttar Pradesh has been booked for repeatedly making hate speeches and issuing rape threats to Muslim women outside a mosque in Sitapur on Hindu New Year on April 2, 2022.
The said video may be viewed here:
In your hometown, a religious hindu leader Bajrang Muni Das called for the ‘rape’ of Muslim women,and you chose silence.
Here is the full video. It’s been more than 5 days. No action against him by Police yet. pic.twitter.com/EP3kkOY6s5
— Mohammed Zubair (@zoo_bear) April 7, 2022
CJP had pointed out in detailed analysis how “key sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) like Sections 153, 153A, 153B, 295A, 354A, 503, 504 and 505 have not been applied to the hate offender. Besides Section 67 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 and Sections 3 and 4 of the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986 are missing in the police registered FIR.” The detailed complaint was made to to Mr. Mukund Goel, DGP, UP made today, CJP has urged that only such a comprehensive complaint will ensure both a non-partisan and in-depth investigation as also a prosecution.
As observed and noted from a viral video on Twitter at that time in 2022, Bajrang Muni Das, the head of Maharshi Shri Lakshman Das Udasin Ashram, was seen openly threatening Muslim women with sexual assault while addressing supporters from his vehicle parked outside a mosque in Sitapur. Das’s audience comprised people who were part of a procession on the occasion of Hindu New Year. Much like many such processions being taken out recently, they made it a point to halt outside a mosque where Das spoke into a microphone connected to loudspeaker.
This video that “went viral” on Twitter, showed Bajrang Muni Das openly threatening Muslim women with sexual assault while addressing supporters from his vehicle parked outside a mosque in Sitapur. Das’s audience comprised people who were part of a procession on the occasion of Hindu New Year. Much like many such processions being taken out recently, they made it a point to halt outside a mosque where Das spoke into a microphone connected to loudspeaker and said, “If you tease a single [Hindu] girl, I will abduct your daughters and daughters-in-law from your house, and rape them in public.” The vile rape threat was filmed on video and went viral online shortly thereafter.
Also expressing concern over the significant delay in the so-called Mahant’s arrest, and the hate speeches made in the presence of a police officer, CJP has urged the DGP UP to consider the seriousness of the offence as done by the Uttarakhand High Court (March 2022) in the case of Jitendra Narayan Tyagi alias Waseem Rizvi vs. State of Uttarakhand, wherein the Court rejected the bail application of serial hate offender, Jitendra Tyagi and held that Hate Speech didn’t fall under the purview of the fundamental right to Freedom of Speech and Expression granted under Article 19 (1) (a) of the Indian Constitution. The Court further stated, “A balance has to be struck between the right to individual liberty and the interest of society,” adding, “No right can be absolute, and reasonable restrictions can be placed on them.”
On April 23, 2022, the District Court Judge Sanjai Kumar, Sitapur, granted bail to Bajrang Muni Das, ‘Mahant’ of the Maharshi Shri Lakshman Das Udasin Ashram. Das had been accused of openly threatening Muslim women with rape as he spoke from his vehicle parked outside a mosque in Khairabad, Uttar Pradesh. As he stepped out of prison this Sunday, he was quoted by The Telegraph saying, “I don’t regret my statement. I shall continue to protect my Hindu religion and women. I’m ready to go to jail and face such attacks a thousand times.”
Das was arrested by the police on April 13, 2022 from Sitapur, 100 km from state capital Lucknow, six days after the incident, and was charged under sections 298 (utterance or gesture in the sight of that person or places with the deliberate intention of wounding the religious feelings of any person), 354 (sexual harassment, making sexually-coloured remarks) and 509 (using word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). UP ADG (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar had reportedly stated that stringent action would be taken against Das.
This was after CJP had pointed out the deliberate laxity in charges and sections of the law applied in the case of the hate crimes by Bajrang Muni Das.
Even before April 2022, there are several hate instigating videos by Bajrang Muni Das made in the recent past and yet this mendicant, who has been given security by the UP police under Ajay Bisht/Yogi Adityanath clearly enjoys high level immunity.
Image Courtesy: abplive.com