Swami Agnivesh speaking at a conference in Guwahati, Assam.

Attack on me was state-sponsored. I cannot believe DIG-level enquiry. It should be probed by Supreme Court or High Court judge, says Swami Agnivesh

Ghazanfar Abbas | Caravan Daily

NEW DELHI: “Legitimizing attack on me, Haryana’s health minister Anil Vij has said that whoever speaks against Narendra Modi, his tongue will be cut and hands will be chopped of. There are many such people who are legitimizing this attack. These BJP leaders are involved in such attacks,” said noted social worker and peace activist Swami Agnivesh in an interview to Caravan Daily.

This past Tuesday (17 July), Agnivesh was assaulted by a mob in Jharkhand’s Pakur district. The attackers, said to be members of BJP’s youth wing, were shouting Jai Shri Ram while assaulting 78-year-old Swami.


Can you recall what happened with you in Jharkhand’s Pakur district?

I was going to Jharkahnd’s Littpara to educate the Adivasi people about their constitutional rights which governments have not been giving them. While addressing a press conference at the hotel, I got to know that some BJP men were protesting against me outside. I said I want to talk to them but they did not come inside the hotel. As I stepped out to proceed for the event, they fatally attacked on me. They abused me, torn my cloth and pushed me to the ground. It was an attempt to kill me but I thank God who saved me.

You are a renowned figure, so how do you see this attack on you particularly when such attacks and incidents of lynching have become common?

See, they don’t care whether the person is renowned or unrenowned. I would say that they have brutally killed several innocent people in mob lynching. If I start from the lynching of Akhlaq to Junaid to Pehlu Khan to Qasim and so many others, in no case the culprits have been punished. They deliberately create hate and through mob kill the people. So lynch mob attacked me. And while attacking on me they were raising slogan “Jai Sri Ram” as if they have taken a contract of Ram.

Inspired from many great personalities, we have been working for last 50 years for peace that’s why they are against us. Their Hindutva is very narrow and communal which has been created just to take political mileage. So, they just want to polarize Hindu votes. Now people need to be aware and save the country from them.

What do you say on Jharkhand’s minister CP Singh comment that you engineered attack on you? 

All media persons were there. All the faces of attackers who belong to BJP or RSS can be clearly seen there. Why would I get them attack on me myself? Why would I get my clothes torn or abused myself? So this comment of CP Singh is very absurd and wrong.

What is your demand?

Jharkhand CM Raghubar Das had ordered a DIG probe on the same day, but I demanded that the probe should be in the monitoring of either Supreme Court Judge or any retired Judge of Ranchi High Court. This will show that the government is really sincere towards order of Supreme Court that mobocracy is unacceptable. It was a preplanned and state-sponsored attack and I don’t have any faith in any state government’s agency.

What do you say on the silence of central government over the incident?

Haryana’s health minister Anil Vij tweeted that whoever will speak against Narendra Modi, his tongue will be cut, and hands will be chopped off while legitimizing the attack on me. There are many such people who are legitimizing this attack. These BJP leaders are involved in such attacks. If Naredra Modi is really serious towards Supreme Court’s order he should take strong action against his own party minister and leaders who openly supporting such incidents. No small statement will work as he does at a certain interval. I would like to say to the chief of RSS that if members of RSS are doing this all in the name of RSS, it is very shameful. Mohan Bhagwat ji, don’t promote an RSS that is narrow, communal and believes in the culture of violence.


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