RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat on Saturday dismissed reports of cow vigilantes indulging in communal violence, saying that on the contrary those protecting bovines within the constitutional framework were being “attacked and killed”.
Bhagwat asked the government not to misinterpret the facts on cow protection and make sure that criminals were punished and innocents not harmed as the “virtuous work of cow protection will increase in coming days”.
Addressing a crowd of RSS activists at his annual Vijaya Dashami speech in Nagpur, he said volunteers of the Hindutva group and other organisations were peacefully involved in the cow protection campaign, which “is also included in the Directive Principles of our Constitution”.
He said cow smuggling had emerged as a serious issue in all states, and especially on the Bangladesh border which made cow protection “more valuable”.
He said inquiries into recent incidences of violence and atrocities by cow vigilantes had made it “amply clear that these activities or the activists were not involved in those acts of violence”.
“On the contrary many activists who were peacefully involved in cow protection were attacked and killed. This issue is neither discussed nor being inquired. It is unfair to link cow protectors or the entire activity of cow protection with violent incidences or communal feelings,” Bhagwat said in his Hindi speech. The English translation of the speech was made available on the RSS’ website.
The RSS chief said many Muslims involved in the activity of cow protection, cow promotion and management of cow shelters, told him that a “nefarious campaign” was being run to create tension among the people of different religions in India.
Apparently referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s stern warning against violence in the name of cow, Bhagwat asked RSS volunteers, who are “piously involved in the activity”, not to get distracted with the statements of “highly placed persons in the government” and remarks by the Supreme Court asking governments to act against those involved in lynching incidents.
“People who are criminals and involved in violent activities should be bothered about that.”
He asked the government to “stay away from such misinterpretation and ensure that criminals get penalised and the innocents are not troubled”.
He said the utility of the Indian breed of cow was scientifically proven by “the medicinal value of cow dung and urine for human beings”.