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July 7, 2002                                                                                                                  <<< News Network index page


(Aman Ekta Manch, Delhi)


You would be aware that while the Gujarat government has called off the Gaurav Rath Yatra of Narendra Modi, the Jagannath Rath yatra on July 12 continues to pose a grave threat to lives and general security in Ahmedabad. While this Yatra is 125 years old,
the VHP has for many years been using it in the service of its own agenda. As a result the Yatra, passing with often provocative slogans through several Muslim localities, has been the flashpoint of serious incidents of communal violence especially in 1985 and  1992. This year we fear the Yatra promises to be more bloody than ever, particularly in the light of Ashok Singhal's threat, issued on June 22 at the VHP Margdarshak Mandal, that all Indian Muslims will henceforth have to live in refugee camps as in Gujarat.

The Aman Ekta Manch has tried since mid-June to raise this issue at several levels, through letters to the editor and by approaching three ex-Prime Ministers to write letters to A B
Vajpayee appealing to him to ensure peace in Ahmedabad. In addition, a Memorandum is to be submitted to the PM by Aman Ekta Manch on Monday.

Two further immediate actions are planned: 1. Mass faxing and e-mailing of letters to the Prime Minister's Office by concerned individuals and organizations. The suggested
text of the message is given at the end of the letter. Please  deluge the PMO with faxes or  e-mails or both by Monday/Tuesday.

The fax numbers are: (011) 3019334, 3016857, 3019545 and the e-mail ids are: [email protected], [email protected]

2. A day-long dharna on July 9 (Tuesday) in front of the office of the Resident Commissioner of Gujarat in Delhi. (This office is located above the Gujarat government emporium "Gurjari" on Baba Kharak Singh Marg.) The dharna will be from 10 am to 6 pm. Please try to commit to stay for the whole day. If this is absolutely not  possible, do stay either from 10am to 2pm or from 2pm to 6pm.

Please mobilise as many people as you can. We request this  commitment from one another to ensure that a sizeable number of people are on dharna at all times during the day.

A memorandum will be submitted to the RC at the end of the dharna.

Please come with plays and songs, placards, etc.

Aman Ekta Manch

Suggested Text of the letter to the PM:

It is reported that the decision to call off the Gaurav Rath Yatras in Gujarat was because of apprehension by the National Human Rights Commission of large-scale violence and taking into view intelligence reports of the possibility of violence.

Are these apprehensions and reports not true of the July 12  Jagannnath Rath Yatra too, particularly given the fact that this yatra is to pass through the sensitive areas of Ahmedabad?

In the above context, if there is any damage to life and property  during the course of the Rath Yatra on July 12 or after, you, as Prime Minister, and your government will be held wholly responsible and accountable by the people of India and in the court of world opinion. I/We appeal to you to take immediate steps to restore confidence and ensure peace in Ahmedabad.



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