regular-article-logo Monday, 05 June 2023

Police register case against sadhus for violating Covid protocol

They have been booked under the Epidemic Diseases (Amendment) Act

Piyush Srivastava Lucknow Published 19.01.22, 01:19 AM

Narsinghanand. File photo

Uttarakhand police have registered a case against some sadhus for violating Covid protocol to organise a protest demanding the withdrawal of cases against those booked for delivering hate speeches at a Dharma Sansad in December.

The case was registered after the sadhus, camping at the Sarvanand ghat along the Ganga at Har Ki Pauri in Haridwar since Friday, suspended the dharna and fast when one of them fell ill.


The sadhus have been booked under the Epidemic Diseases (Amendment) Act.

Calls for a genocide against Muslims had been issued at the December 17-19 Dharma Sansad in Haridwar.

Yati Narsinghanand Saraswati, who had convened the congregation, was arrested last week but on the lesser charge of making objectionable remarks against women of a particular religion. Narsinghanand had started the “satyagraha” at Har Ki Pauri seeking the release of Waseem Rizvi aka Jitendra Narayan Tyagi, who had been arrested for allegedly making communally sensitive statements at a media conference and the Dharma Sansad.

After the arrest of Narsinghanand, who had converted former Shia Waqf Board chairman Rizvi, the other sadhus had continued with the dharna (Pratikar Sabha) on the banks of the Ganga, demanding the withdrawal of the cases and the release of Narsinghanand and Tyagi.

The dharna was withdrawn on Monday evening when the condition of Swami Amritanand, who was leading the protest after Narsinghanand’s arrest on Saturday, deteriorated.

Rakesh Kathait, the in-charge of Kotwali police station in the town, said: “Bijendra Kumain, the in-charge of the Khadkhadi police outpost, has registered a case against Anand Swaroop, Sindhu Raj, Amritanand, Prabodhanand Giri, Shivanand and some other sadhus for ignoring Covid protocol and organising a gathering along the river bank.”

Swami Anand Swaroop, who offered juice to Amritanand, said: “We have suspended our dharna because of the health condition of Amritanand. Still, the police booked us and made it clear that they wouldn’t withdraw the cases against Narsinghanand and Tyagi.”

“We will soon gather at Prayagraj (Allahabad) to decide our next course of action against the BJP governments (in poll-bound Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh),” Anand Swaroop said.

The police have also registered a case against a Bajrang Dal member in Haridwar and are looking for him. Identified as Ankit Kumar of Mahadevpuram Colony, he had released a video on Monday in which he made derogatory remarks against a community.

“Ankit is a Bajrag Dal member who had released a video on social media, making abusive comments against a community. We are conducting raids at several places to arrest him,” said Pramod Uniyal, a police officer at Sidkul in Haridwar.

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