Roorkee Hindu mahapanchayat: Organiser monk under house arrest

One of the organisers of the proposed Hindu Mahapanchayat in Uttarakhand and controversial Hindu monk, Swami Anand Swaroop, was Wednesday placed under house arrest.

The Haridwar district administration said that no permission has been granted for the Hindu mahapanchayat after the Supreme Court on Tuesday directed Uttarakhand chief secretary to place on record the state’s position that there will not be any “untoward situation” or “unacceptable statements.”

The administration has also clamped prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) in a 5 km area of the village, Indian Express reported.

“Adequate police force is deployed in the village and Section 144 is already imposed. Around five to six people have been taken into preventive custody and some have been stopped from coming to the village,” Haridwar additional district magistrate (ADM) B L Shah said to the newspaper.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday came down harshly on the Uttarakhand government over the proposed Hindu Mahapanchayat in Roorkee on Wednesday.

A bench presided by Justice A.M Khanwilkar sought an affidavit from the Chief Secretary explaining what measures are taken to prevent hate speeches in Hindu Mahapanchayat.

“You will have to take immediate action. Don’t make us say something. There are other ways of preventive action. You know how to do it!”, Justice Khanwilkar told the Deputy Advocate General of the State of Uttarakhand Jatinder Kumar Sethi.

Referring to the Tehseen Poonawalla case, the Supreme Court reminded that the Chief Secretary, Home Secretary and other concerned officials would be held responsible if hate speech occurs in the event.

While the Uttarakhand government said it had taken preventive measures and made investigations, the Supreme Court demanded prevention of hate speech beyond investigations.

Justice Khanwilkar: “You have to stop activity, and not just do investigation. File an affidavit disclosing what steps you have taken to prevent it and thereafter”

Justice Khanwilkar also said: “these events don’t occur suddenly, overnight. They are announced well in advance. Local police must go into action immediately to ensure that nothing untoward happens. And whether those steps have been taken you explain that”.