By Siddhant Mohan, TwoCircles.net
Maharajganj: The disruption of Church services at Maharajaganj brought the activities of Hindu Yuva Vahini into the limelight for all the wrong reasons. But what if we told you that according to HYV, their actions were, in fact, a response to the actions of Pakistan’s intelligence agency ISI, China, Nepal and Kashmiri youth?
A conversation with Narsingh Pandey, the district president of Hindu Yuva Vahini revealed that far from being apologetic for their actions, they, in fact, have an elaborate explanation of why they did so. And it sounds, well, straight out of Conspiracy theory 101.
Pandey claims that religious conversion was “definitely going on that day” when police reached the site but attendees denied because they had offerings.
He said, “We got information that foreigners were staying there. We asked the district administration if they had the info about the stay of foreigners in Maharajganj.
“We were receiving substantial information from locals that various things were happening, including the fact that these people were luring and converting people. But we are bound to act by the law. So, we decided to understand the situation first and then act with the help of the administration,” said Pandey.
Remarks made by Pandey over the issue substantiate his stand that it was the presence of US nationals on the site of the incident that led to the ‘disruption’. And Narsingh Pandey, who lives in Nautanwa, around 80 kilometers far from the Maharajganj, played a key role in mobilising the local cadre to ‘control’ the situation on Friday. He said that he was on alert as members of the organisation had caught various religious conversion events in the same region.
Pandey said, “Little kids with women were present there in the church. And some foreigners joined them. So when I asked the authority if they knew about all of this, they answered in the negative.”
When we poked Pandey over what authority personnel he contacted, Pandey said, “I personally called our volunteers from there. They had little information about the incident. Also, I made few calls to the villagers of the area. And yes, I did call the local police station.”
Hence, it comes as no surprise that the claims made by Pandey are in complete contradiction to the accounts of the eyewitnesses and even the Police. “Our volunteers were furious after finding out that conversion was going on. But I made them stand and watch the incident outside the Church premises.”
Pandey’s statement also, in many ways, was a testimony to the powers of the Hindu Yuva Vahini under the new state government. He said, “I told volunteers to watch the police action, if they are doing it (their job) well or not. But I do have to say that our volunteers were watching the whole incident from the outside. They never interfered,” he said
However, according to the version provided by the police officials and the Church, members of Hindu Yuva Vahini were constantly pushing the police to register a case against the Church Priest Yuhanna Adam. They also vandalised the Church property and one member, Ganesh Kharwar, waived a Rs 100 note at an elderly lady and asked her to chant ‘Jai Shriram’.
Continuing with this bizarre claims, Pandey said that contrary to police confirmation that US nationals do have all their papers with the passport, none of them had their papers. Quite what made HYV and Pandey a parallel investigative body in the case, no one knows.
But Pandey’s biggest ‘revelation’ came after this. “This area (Gorakhpur) is close to the Indo-Nepal border. ISI conducts their activities there. Chinese incursion is also happening for this reason. They are making training camps in Nepal. And because of all of this and patronage of Congress regime in the past, stone pelting is happening in Jammu and Kashmir. These are the reasons why we are always on the alert in this region.”
Pandey, of course, went on to dismiss all claims made by the Church and even the police. “They all are accusing us because they want to get rid of the hindrance between them and their ‘those unlawful activities,” he said.
Pandey’s rationale may not make sense to everyone, but his and HYV’s spirit will be bolstered by the recent police action in this case. The Kothibhar police station has issued a notice to Church priest Yuhanna Adam over why he did not inform the police about the arrival of US nationals in the Church. Responding to this debatable action, Adam said, “Foreigners do not have to inform police when they go to Varanasi. The priest of a temple doesn’t have to do so when foreigners enter a temple. Why should it be any different for me and a Church?”
Meanwhile, the US Embassy India took note of the incident and is keeping eye on every update in the case. US Embassy New Delhi spokesperson Joseph Kruzich told TwoCircles.net, “We are aware of the news reports concerning the incident. The protection of American citizens overseas is our highest priority. But due to privacy concerns, we cannot say anything more at this time.”