Ahmedabad: Social activists here apprehend
that communal tension may flare up at Pirana village on the
outskirts of city where Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) will be
holding three-day seminar starting from Saturday, which coincides
with the Eid-ul-Azha (Bakra Eid) on November 6-7.
Activists including Teesta Setalvad of Citizen for
Justice and Peace (CJP), Mallika Sarabhai and Harsh Mander
have written a letter to Governor Kamla and DGP Chitranjan
demanding their intervention in the matter and revoke the
permission give to the VHP.
They have further sought that if it was not possible to
revoke the permission, strict undertaking should be taken from
the VHP to ensure peaceful conduct during the seminar, and
observers be deployed at the venue along with Rapid Action
The seminar is being organised by the Dharmprasar
(Propagation of Religion) division of VHP at the Prerna Peeth,
located near the shrine (dargah) of Imam Shah Baba, at Pirana.
"We are deeply disturbed by media reports that there may
be attempts to provoke communal tension within the state of
Gujarat," the letter written by social activists said.
"The fact that the festival of Bakri Eid falls on
November 6-7 makes the intentions of the VHP all the
worrisome and suspicious," they said.
Meanwhile, VHP general secretary Kaushik Mehta said their
functions have been peaceful in the past and will remain the
"Our venue is about a kilometre away from the dargah, so
how does it affect the peace," Mehta said.
Reacting to the letter written by activists, he said,
"This is nothing but appeasement of Muslims and vote bank
politics. We have been doing such seminars since 1960s. This
is not the first time. How does it affect Eid in any way I
can`t understand," he added.