regular-article-logo Monday, 05 June 2023

Uttar Pradesh: Sadhu with Yogi’s security in cry to ‘kill’

Bajrang Muni Das’s purported comments mirror a yearlong trend of many heartland sadhus calling for a genocide of Muslims

Piyush Srivastava Lucknow Published 20.02.23, 03:45 AM
Yogi Adityanath

Yogi Adityanath File Photo

An Uttar Pradesh sadhu who enjoys government security has allegedly said that eliminating “Muslim jihadis” is the only way to establish a Hindu rashtra, speaking less than a year after being arrested on the charge of inciting Hindus to kill and rape Muslims.

Bajrang Muni Das’s purported comments mirror a yearlong trend of many heartland sadhus calling for a genocide of Muslims. The latest remark attributed to him came a day after a Madhya Pradesh seer patronised by chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan appeared to suggest that next year’s general election would lead to the establishment of a Hindu rashtra.


“We know that India was a peaceful country in the past and its peace was destroyed after the entry of Muslims. The Muslim jihadis must be eliminated to automatically turn India into a Hindu rashtra,” Muni, who is out on bail, appears to say in a video circulated widely on social media on Sunday.

Muni is mahant of the Maharishi Shri Laxman Das Udasi Ashram in Khairabad, Sitapur, 100km north of Lucknow. He was arrested on April 13 last year for allegedly urging Hindus to kill Muslims and abduct and rape their women.

He was granted bail on April 24 after apologising for the remark in court but told the media after his release: “I have no feeling of guilt for what I said.”

Muni confirmed to local reporters on Sunday that the latest video was genuine.

“We cannot wait for India to become a Hindu rashtra, we have to speed it up and that is possible only when we finish off those with a jihadi mindset,” he is purportedly heard saying in the video.

Muni moves around with two Provincial Armed Constabulary guards — a privilege many sadhus in the state have enjoyed since Yogi Adityanath became chief minister in 2017. Muni’s guards were not withdrawn after his arrest.

Several Muslim clerics have demanded punishment for Muni over his latest remarks but some Hindu sadhus sought to exonerate him.

“We used to hear that they (Hindu Rashtra proponents) would eliminate Muslims after they succeed in making India a Hindu rashtra. But what Muni is saying is new — that the Muslims should be killed first before India can become a Hindu rashtra,” said Sufiyan Nizami, a Lucknow-based cleric.

“Muni is a habitual offender who knows he has government support. His remarks are a slap in the face of democratic India and the rule of law.”

Paramhans Das, an Ayodhya-based sadhu, however, said: “I spoke to Bajrang Muni over the phone, and he told me he was talking only about jihadi Muslims. I support his statement and call on the country to listen to him.”

On Saturday, Dhirendra Krishna Shastri, a self-styled godman based in Chattarpur, Madhya Pradesh, told his followers: “Prepare for next year and also prepare to see India as a Hindu rashtra.”

He seemed to be suggesting that India would be declared a Hindu rashtra after the 2024 general election.

Shortly after his speech, chief minister Chouhan made what appears a personal, religious visit to Shastri’s ashram and met him.

Shastri has claimed he has nothing to do with politics and had merely voiced a popular demand for India to be declared a Hindu nation. Several sadhus had been arrested — and later granted bail — a year ago for allegedly urging genocide against Muslims at a conclave in Haridwar, Uttarakhand, in December 2021.

Around the same time, a video had emerged of a “Yuva Vahini” event in Delhi where participants took an oath to “fight, die for and, if necessary, kill” for the establishment of a Hindu rashtra. The Delhi police, who report to the Centre, sought to close the case saying no hateful comments had been made about any religion. Adiyanath, himself the mahant of a temple in Gorakhpur, had as a BJP parliamentarian held processions during UPA rule demanding India be declared a Hindu nation. He has been reticent on the subject since becoming chief minister.

Follow us on: