Zee Media Bureau/Kamna Arora
Lucknow: Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader Ashok Singhal, who was on Friday placed under house arrest in Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh, on Saturday slammed the state government for its behaviour.
Singhal was placed under house arrest as part of the UP govt`s clampdown on the saints` community moving for the 84 `kosi parikrama` scheduled for August 25 from Ayodhya.
Defending the parikrama which has increased the political heat in the Uttar Pradesh ahead of the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, Singhal said 200 people are coming for the yatra. But the UP government is calling so much force and behaving as if we are going to war with China, said Singhal.
Singhal said the Samajwadi Party has unnecessarily made a huge issue out of this, and questioned the state government on whether it is a crime for saints to take part in a procession such as this.
"When I had a word with Mulayam Singh, I told him this is a small Yatra and he sounded positive. Around 200 people will go for the Yatra everyday. I don`t understand why they have deployed 30 companies here (Ayodhya) when it can be done with the help of 12 police officials. We don`t understand why they have made it an issue. With Mulayam Singh`s conversation, I didn`t feel that this Yatra will be cancelled," he said.
"I`m unable to understand why they have put a ban on this yatra. If they had to maintain law and order, they shouldn`t have deployed the forces. If saints want to come and do Parikrama then what crime are they doing?" he questioned.
The Uttar Pradesh government has heightened security and sealed the borders of six districts after the VHP refused to shelve its 84-km procession in Ayodhya.
All vehicles are being screened to prevent people from undertaking the march, planned by the VHP to press for the resumption of religious activities at the contested Ayodhya site believed to be the birthplace of Lord Ram.
The local administration has imposed Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code, and asked people who have assembled for the march from August 22 to leave the area.
The government has decided to deploy 10 companies of the Rapid Action Force (RSF) and 12 companies of the Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) in the region.