Agra cool to Hindutva groups after murder

Agra : Hindutva activists have been trying to raise the communal pitch following the murder of a VHP leader here but the locals in the Taj Mahal city appear to be mostly indifferent.

After a round of fiery speeches by BJP leaders, including Agra MP and union minister Ram Shankar Katheria, Hindutva groups like the Bajrang Dal, Shiv Sena and Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) have become aggressive.

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But so far, most locals have shown little interest in their emotional outbursts.

Cornered by the media and the opposition parties after being videoed abusing one community, Bharatiya Janata Party leaders say they didn’t say anything objectionable.

The Agra administration does not seem to have taken any note of the hate speeches made on Sunday at the condolence meeting of VHP leader Arun Mahaur, who was gunned down last week.

Some officials say there are no specific complaints against the Hindutva groups.

Police sources say that Hindutva activists have been organising meetings in Agra’s rural areas and plan to fan out with the ashes of Mahaur, who was killed when he was returning from a temple.

Mahaur had been active against cow slaughter.

BJP leaders are upset with BSP legislator Zulfikar Ali Bhutto for reportedly saying that Mahaur was killed due to a financial dispute and not because he championed the cause of cow protection.

Although the “hate speeches” have got into print, police have not registered any cases against BJP MPs and legislators who publicly warned the minority community of retaliation following the murder.

But some police sources said they were likely to act against some BJP leaders and Hindutva groups.

Agra politician Vinay Paliwal told IANS that the BJP was trying to whip up communal passions ahead of the 2017 assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh.