Less than three months after getting arrested for making Islamophobic remarks and instigating violence at the Haridwar 'Dharma Sansad' in December 2021, controversial Hindu leader Yati Narsinghanand is at it again.
On 3 April, an event called the 'Hindu Mahapanchayat' was organised at North Delhi's Burari Grounds. Here, Narsinghanand, who was released on bail on 15 February, delivered a speech to Hindus, asking them to pick up arms and claiming that the Hindu community faced a threat of conversion and violence if a "Muslim is made Prime Minister."
The main organiser of the event, Preet Singh was previously arrested for hate speeches having been made at a similar event he had organised at Delhi's Jantar Mantar in August 2021. He too, like Narsinghanand, is out on bail.
It is important to note that the organisers were denied permission to hold the event by the Delhi Police. Speaking to The Quint, the organisers had said, "Even if the police deny permission for the event, the event will take place."
In two separate incidents, five journalists were assaulted by right-wing mobs at the event. Meghnad Bose, The Quint's Principal Correspondent, was one of the reporters who was allegedly manhandled. We will be speaking to him in this episode.
We will also be speaking to Meer Faisal, who works at The Hindustan Gazette, and Arbab Ali, a freelance journalist. Both of them were allegedly assaulted and manhandled by the mob for their reportage.
In today's episode, we bring you the ground reality of the Hindu Mahapanchayat through the journalists who encountered it first-hand.
The Quint has reached out to the DCP of the Delhi Police for their response to the allegations of complicity raised by the journalists who were present at the event. This story will be updated with the police’s version of the events as and when we receive a response.