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The Wild West of Uttar Pradesh Part 1: Rise of the Hindu Fringe

The Wild West of Uttar Pradesh Part 1 takes you to Rori village, where young Hindus are getting military training.

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The Quint travelled to Rori village, an hour-and-a-half away from New Delhi to meet Parminder Arya, who has served for 15 years in the Indian Army, and now gives military training to young Hindus. Young people ranging from ages nine to thirty assemble in Arya’s courtyard every evening for a two-hour training. These young Hindus are being radicalised to counter the threat of the Islamic State (ISIS) takeover in 2020.

India is not a plate of rasgullas that the ISIS can devour.
Parminder Arya

Apart from training in traditional armed warfare, Arya teaches these kids about the Hindu religion. Arya’s close aide, lawyer and Hindu activist, Chetna Sharma believes that knowledge about religion and the threat it is under is as important as weapon training. She emphasises that Hindus will be mercilessly killed at the hands of the ISIS, if they don’t learn to defend themselves.

If we don’t give them (young Hindus) weapon training, how will they counter the ISIS when they attack us?
Chetna Sharma

Chetna Shama is the zonal commissioner of the Akhand Hindustan Morcha and also a member of the Hindu Swabhiman Sangh. The Quint requested to speak to the young members of Arya’s squad, but before they appeared on camera, Chetna tutored the kids and they repeated after her, verbatim.

21-year-old Kuldeep doesn’t need to be tutored for the cameras though. He is finishing college and insists on either working for the government or, at any rate, for a Hindu. He believes that all Muslims are traitors. Kuldeep has been under training for the last two years.

Rori is one village and one such training centre in Western UP. Chetna tells The Quint, there are many such villages with many such centres and many driven and dedicated people like Parminder Arya, who have taken up the Hindu cause. In Part 2 & 3 of the Wild West of Uttar Pradesh, The Quint explores other such training centres and how these Hindu vigilante groups are recruiting and proliferating.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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