Photographs and videos of Bajrang Dal activists allegedly undergoing training holding air guns and ‘trishul deeksha’ have gone viral on social media. According to sources, the camp was part of the ‘Shaurya Prashikshana Varga’ that took place from May 5 to 11 at Sai Shankar Educational Institute, at Ponnampet in Kodagu district.
About 400 activists were said to have taken part in the Bajrang Dal-organised event. A Bajarang Dal activist said, the participants were trained in self-defence, but no arms were distributed as alleged in some quarters.
Authorities of the school, where the camp was held, said the premises was being used for ‘Prashikshana varga’ training for several years and were unaware of training with arms. Congress leaders expressed concern over the training camp.
AICC in-charge of Tamil Nadu, Puducherry & Goa and MLA Dinesh Gundu Rao in a tweet said, “Why are BajrangDal members receiving arms training? Isn’t training in firearms without a proper license an offence? Isn’t this a violation of the Arms Act 1959, Arms Rules 1962? And Why are @BJP4India leaders openly attending and supporting this activity?”
Congress MLA Rizwan Arshad tweeted: “At this age, most young men set out to achieve dreams. In K’atka, Bajrang Dal is destroying young lives by training them to unleash violence in the name of religion. This needs to be stopped at any cost”. Police said they have not received any complaint so far.