VHP leader Togadia to visit Kandhamal despite ban



Bhubaneswar: Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) international general secretary Praveen Togadia is continuing with his tour to Orissa's volatile Kandhamal district despite the administration banning his entry, a VHP leader said Friday.

"There is no change in our plan," VHP state unit secretary Gouri Prasad Rath told a news agency.

"Togodia and several others will not only reach Kandhamal today (Friday) they will also spend the night in the district," he said.

The district administration fears that Togadia's visit may disturb peace in the region, where at least 38 people were killed over months of communal violence following the murder of Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati, a Hindu monk, on August 23, 2008.

Police said a notification was issued by the district administration banning the entry of Togadia and three others to Kandhamal.

"We are keeping a watch on the situation. We are on alert," Superintendent of Police S. Praveen Kumar told IANS.

IANS