VHP to re-convert more people

VHP to re-convert more people

The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) in Kerala is set to coordinate more “re-conversion” programmes in the state but Hindu outfits maintained that people were not being brought back to Hinduism as part of the ghar wapsi (homecoming) programme launched in other parts of the country.

A Hindu helpline number is doubling as a coordination point for the re-conversion initiative in the state but people running the helpline claimed that “willing return” of the converted back to Hinduism was on before the ghar wapsi programme gathered pace.

About 35 people from nine Dalit Christian families in Alappuzha and Kollam districts reconverted to Hinduism on Sunday in the presence of leaders of local Sangh outfits. The VHP claimed that it would coordinate re-conversion of about 200 more people on Christmas, December 25.

Aneesh Balakrishnan, state coordinator of the Hindu Helpline, said the helpline – since it opened five years ago – was offering legal counsel and other community-related services; assistance in reconversions was only one of them.

“The helpline receives many requests for re-conversion to Hinduism. We only forward these requests to local functionaries of Hindu outfits,” Balakrishnan told Deccan Herald. He, however, didn’t share the number of reconversions done through the helpline.

The ruling Congress and the Left-led opposition slammed the divisive agenda behind reconversions.

Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president V M Sudheeran called for people’s resistance against the move. CPM state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan called for caution against fundamentalist interventions that lead to communal tension in the society. “The government has responsibility to stop forced conversions backed by the RSS,” Vijayan wrote on his Facebook page. The state police is investigating the reconversions.

Bhargavaram, state general secretary of the Hindu Aikyavedi, said the reconversions were not part of the ghar wapsi programme.

“Incidents of converted people returning to Hinduism have been happening in Kerala for decades. But politically, it’s convenient for some groups to tag them as part of an organised re-conversion programme,” Bhargavaram told Deccan Herald.

MP throws paper at dy speaker

Rashtriya Janata Dal MP Rajesh Ranjan drew strong censure from Deputy Speaker M Thambidurai for throwing bits of a torn newspaper at the Chair while protesting against religious conversion, DHNS reports. Thambidurai immediately adjourned the House for 10 minutes. “You have thrown paper at me.

That is why I adjourned the House. That is not fair on the part of a member. Not giving respect to the Chair is not correct...,” the deputy Speaker said. Ranjan was seen apologising to the deputy Speaker, while refusing to accept that he threw bits of paper at him.

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