In pursuance of the resolutions adopted at the "national convention against communal fascism and imperialist intervention" held in Delhi on 26 June, a five-member delegation comprising noted journalist Kuldip Nayar, ex-Chief Justice of Delhi HC Rajinder Sachar, noted Gandhian Nirmala Deshpande, PUCL leader Chittaranjan Singh and Party leader Srilata Swaminathan met the NHRC chairperson Mr. JS Verma on June 26. Handing over a memorandum the delegation expressed apprehension of communal disturbances in the wake of the "Rathyatra" to be taken out in Gujarat by BJP and VHP, because it is planned to pass through areas where large number of Muslims reside. They also drew his attention towards VHP and Bajrang Dal calls to Hindus to "chase the Muslims out of their areas" even at the sacrifice of lakhs of Hindus. This is an open call to exterminate the Muslims, they pointed out, as a result of which Muslims in the state are terrified.
The delegation urged Mr. Verma to ensure that at least the Govt. of Gujarat comes out with an assurance to take all possible steps to protect the minorities. It urged the commission to explore all possible avenues to ensure that the proposed "Rathyatra" is re-routed. The commission was urged to closely monitor the activities of BJP, VHP and the Gujarat government in the light of their dubious record. Mr. JS Verma took cognizance of the severity of the problem and assured the delegation that level best efforts will be taken in this regard.
Source: ML Update, A CPI(ML) Weekly News Magazine, Vol.-5; No.-27; 3-9 July 2002, firstname.lastname@example.org