Tuesday, September 23, 2008

VHP to Hold Brainstorming Session On Conversion

NEW DELHI, Sept. 13: The VHP’s central governing body is likely to deliberate on ways to further intensify their campaign against religious conversion in Kandhamal, Orissa, and north-eastern states at its two-day brain storming session here beginning on 25 September.
About 300 saints from across the country, all the Shankaracharya and top VHP leaders including Mr Pravin Togadia, Mr Ashok Singhal and prominent parishad functionaries would take part in the meeting, VHP sources told The Statesman. The central governing body meets twice a year to take stock of the progress of various tasks assigned to its units across the country. Based on the assessment of the previous work the parishad sets the future course of action for the organisation.
The murder of VHP leader, Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati, and four others on 23 August, VHP sources said, had brought to the fore the “loopholes” in the organisation’s work against religious conversion. They said VHP was no match to the resourceful Christian missionaries. The governing body is likely to firm up a plan to mobilise adequate resources to prevent religious conversion and announce a countrywide action plan against conversion, sources said.
According to the VHP in about 4-5 districts surrounding Kandmal the dominant ST and tribal community make up 27 per cent of population. They are below the poverty line and hence prone to religious conversion. The VHP now plans to rework its strategy in the region, which recently witnessed widespread arson and violence in the wake of the murder of Swami Laxmanananda.
The VHP conclave would take up the issue of cow slaughter. It is also expected to take stock of the Ramsetu issue and set the agenda for its future campaigns on various issues ahead of Assembly elections in some states and the Lok Sabha elections slated for next year.

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