Togadia on dharna after being barred from entering Kandhamal
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Last Updated: Saturday, March 20, 2010, 00:12
Bhubaneswar: VHP leader Praveen Togadia on Friday night sat on a dharna after the Orissa Police prevented him from entering into the riot-hit Kandhamal district.

Togadia, who arrived at Charichowk in Boudh district, neighbouring to Kandhamal, along with around 200 supporters, was asked not to make any bid to enter into Kandhamal in view of a ban on his visit.

Accompanied by his supporters, he then, sat on a dharna and started doing 'kirtan' at Charichowk.

"I am sitting on a dharna in protest against the Orissa government's undemocratic act of preventing me from going to meet tribals in Kandhamal," Togadia told agency over phone.

Earlier, the district administration deployed police and a magistrate at the entry point to the riot-hit town, after Togadia announced to defy the Orissa government's ban order.

Terming the ban as "illegal and undemocratic", Togadia said it was not fair on part of the government to put a restriction on his visit when they recently allowed European diplomats to make a two-day tour to the communally-sensitive district.

The state govt has also imposed prohibitory orders under section 144 of the CrPC on the movement of Togadia and other VHP functionaries in Kandhamal.

"We have not yet arrested Togadia as he is sitting on a dharna in Boudh district at the border of Kandhamal. If he tries to cross the border, police will take action according to the law of the land," Kandhamal SP Praveen Kumar said.

Kandhamal witnessed widespread riots from August 2008 till October 2009 following the killing of VHP leader Lakhsmananda Saraswati.


First Published: Saturday, March 20, 2010, 00:12

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