NEW DELHI: It’s official. The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) has revealed that it brought back 33,975 persons to their ‘original faith’, through its Ghar Wapsi campaign. A total of 48,651 people were ‘prevented’ from being converted to other religions by the organisation in the last one year.
Affiliated to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the VHP has now claimed huge success in its endeavours, in the golden jubilee year. During its annual meeting in Rajasthan’s Bhilwara last week, the VHP put out figures of the works carried out by them in the country.
Speaking to The Sunday Standard, VHP General Secretary Champat Rai admitted that the Ghar Wapsi programme was a big success for the organisation. “The organisation through its vast grass root network has been able to prevent conversions. The conversions were prevented in Odisha, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Assam. Through Ghar Wapsi programmes we even brought back those people who were converted to other religions before,” Rai said.
The annual report presented by Rai at the Bhilwara meeting showed that 48,651 Hindus were saved from conversion and 33,975 persons were brought back to their ancestral traditions. The report also pointed out that “the organisation arranged marriages for 284 girls belonging to the minority community in Gujarat, while 7,776 were given Sanskrit diskha. 49 sisters from Uttarakhand were brought back to their original religion.” All the figures were pertained between June 2014 and June 2015.
The VHP has been focussing on states where they fear that Hindus were being converted to other religions through either “education or inducement.” North East is one such area for the right wing body. “In Tripura, 12,425 students in 435 schools were given nationalistic education. It is a matter of achievement that 450 youth who had joined militants gave up their arms and returned to national mainstream,” Rai said, adding that the youth belonging to Tripura and Mizoram were lured by militant outfits.
The Ghar Wapsi programme carried out by VHP had drawn flak from various quarters, and even opposition parties hit out at the NDA government. As the criticism mounted, the government asked the Hindu organisations to go slow on these programmes as they were overshadowing the government’s development agenda. “It is an irrelevant question,” Rai said when asked if the Ghar Wapsi programme will continue. “The programme has been on for long and it will continue. Look at Mahatma Gandhi, he wanted his son brought back to Hinduism, so did many other leaders. All minorities in India have converted from Hinduism. They should accept their original faith,” Rai added.
Protecting the cows
During the annual meeting, the VHP also passed a resolution on cow protection requesting the central government to bring a law. They also felt that the school students must be informed about the significance of cow in Indian religious and cultural beliefs. They demanded that the government should make efforts to ban beef in all parts of the country.
Not just about protecting the animal and running gaushalas, the organisation have been continuing with ‘Cow Science’ (Go-Vigyan) courses in various institutes, and this time 1.33 lakhs students appeared for the Cow Science test in 18 states.