Kolkata: Police complaints, several of them under non-bailable sections, were filed today against VHP leaders Pravin Togadia and Jugal Kishore for allegedly making hate speeches in Birbhum district.
The speeches were delivered yesterday during two different programmes in Rampurhat and Kharmadanga areas of the district, a police official said.
However, the official said that no police complaint has been received about the alleged conversion of tribal Christians at a programme organised by VHP at Kharmadanga yesterday.
"We have received two complaints against Pravin Togadia and Jugal Kishore for their alleged hate speeches at Rampurhat and at Kharmadanga village in Birbhum. We have lodged two cases. We have started an investigation," Rampurhat SDPO Jobi Thomas told PTI.
Cases were filed under Sections 153-153A, Section 298 and Section 505 (2) - all non-bailable - and Section 295 which was only bailable, he said.
Bhim Murmu, a resident of Masra village in Birbhum who is also a TMC supporter, lodged the complaint against the VHP leaders at Rampurhat police station, police said.
Murmu further alleged that the provocative speeches of Togadia and Kishore would disturb communal harmony in the district.
At least 150 tribal Christians yesterday "pledged to follow Hinduism" at the VHP programme in Rampurhat.
Asked if police received any complaint about the alleged conversion, Thomas said, "No, we haven't received any such compliant till now."
State VHP leader Sachindranath Singha yesterday said about 1,000 people including Christians, Hindus and Muslims attended the programme.
"During the programme, a 'yajna' - a ritual of fire - was held and about 150 Christians participated in it and took a pledge to follow Hindu path of life. We didn't force anyone to change their religion.
This is not conversion as projected by the media as no legal procedure was followed which is needed for conversion," Singha said.