Speaking about their plans to have grand celebrations with over 1,000 Shoba Yatras in West Bengal on Ram Navami, Sourish Mukherjee, the senior spokesperson of VHP’s Bengal Mandal, told India Today that the VHP will be going extravagant this year after they could not celebrate Ram Navami in a magnificent manner following the construction of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya because of the COVID-19 situation.
“We are planning to carry out over 1,000 Shobha yatras in West Bengal. As many as 20 rallies will be taken out in Kolkata as well on the Ram Navami,” said Mukherjee.
The VHP spokesperson further added that instead of seeking police permission, they will intimate local administration and police station about the rallies planned in their respective areas.
Responding to the question of what would the VHP do in case they are not permitted to carry out the rallies, Mukherjee said they would organise the Shobha Yatras regardless of whether they are granted permission or not. “We don’t think that permission is required for taking out a Shobha Yatra but we will notify the police. Even if they don’t allow it, we will still take out rallies on Ram Navami,” said Mukherjee.
When asked if the Ram Navami rallies will see the participation of supporters carrying arms such as swords, bows and arrows, Mukherjee stated that it is the public that brings the weapons to the rallies as a way to pay tributes to Lord Ram who himself carried a bow and arrow. “VHP does not bring weapons or provide its supporters with weapons in the rallies,” said Mukherjee.
Mukherjee also asked the West Bengal Police to ensure that miscreants and mischief-makers are not allowed to impede any event of VHP during the Ram Navami celebrations.