Darling Of Hindu Right To ‘Jihadi’ – UP Priest Narasimhanand Spreads Hate Despite Losing Fans

Yeti Narasimhanand Saraswati with devotees at Dasna Devi Temple in Ghaziabad. Photo: Manisha Mandal/ThePrint

Form of words:

Dasna: A group of police personnel hang out inside the open gate of the Dasna temple complex in Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh; Their hands are resting on their guns.

“Name? Give me your Aadhaar card,” one of them asks each entrant, before writing down the details – name, Aadhaar number and phone number – in a large register.

Apart from providing security to the house temple of hardline Hindu priest Yeti Narasimhananda Saraswati, police personnel are ensuring that no Muslims enter.

Sometimes unknown outside Ghaziabad, Narasimhananda has consistently built a following through his anti-Muslim rhetoric. By targeting Muslims, he has ensured that he makes headlines again and again and leaves his mark on social media. His videos have given him thousands of views and followers on social media platforms.

“It is not just online. I have followers from every state, and I have followers outside the country too,” Narasimhanand told ThePrint.

The head priest first shot prominently in March this year, when a boy Trapped Temple for water but when the devotees came to know that he was a Muslim he was mercilessly attacked.

Two weeks ago, there was a priest fatally stabbed In the temple premises, after which security was beefed up. Here now there are clear instructions not to allow any Muslim in.

“We are tracking the names of people who came to the temple since the incident with the Muslim child. We check Aadhaar so that there is no way for people to lie about their identity,” said a policeman, one of the 35 uniformed personnel on duty at the temple. “Security has been doubled here since the stabbing,” he said.

Police in temple premises in Ghaziabad |  Photo: Manisha Mandal/ThePrint
Police in temple premises in Ghaziabad | Photo: Manisha Mandal/ThePrint

But the social media that helped The fame of Narasimhananda has also brought him to a place. Last week, he lashed out at those who had strongly supported him earlier.

this one after priest’s video viral, in which he is reportedly telling devotees that women politicians, especially in the BJP, are the “mistresses” of their male counterparts.

The video has also upset the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), whose members have reportedly silenced Supported Priest first.

Read also: SP, Congress targeted BJP over President Kovind’s visit to UP a few months before the assembly elections

damage control

When ThePrint visited the temple complex on Sunday, it found that the latest controversy did not diminish the priest’s followers, although damage control efforts were ongoing.

A woman BJP leader’s Scorpio was standing in the premises, with the BJP flag on it. Narsimhananda’s voice echoed from a two-storey building. He was recording a video with the BJP leader, this time he denied ever humiliating women.

“This video was edited by some jihadis and people against me to make it look like I am making fun of women,” he told ThePrint. “I didn’t do anything like that. I was talking about how dirty politics is.”

The women visiting the Dasna temple have no objection to Narasimhananda’s provocative remarks. To them, that is someone who speaks the “truth”.

“We are all members or supporters of the BJP,” said Radha, a devotee who lives in nearby Shriram Colony. “We come here every Sunday Kirtan And to listen to Babaji’s lectures. He speaks the truth; He is doing good work for our religion. Hinduism is in danger, and he tells us how to save it.”

Other devotees are those who have heard of Narasimhananda through his YouTube videos, where he lectures followers about the “evils” of Islam and the strengthening of Hindu “power”. However, his account has been suspended for breaking community guidelines.

“I saw his videos on YouTube for the first time during the lockdown. I found that I agree with him and trust him. My husband is an RSS worker and also has a huge following. Babaji said we have to take action to protect our religion, and he is right,” Radhika Saxena, who lives in Noida and was visiting the temple for the first time, told ThePrint.

where Narasimhananda has lost supporters, with his latest controversy, the BJP and in the online space.

BJP leaders Tajinder Pal Singh Bagga and Kapil Mishra came out to condemn Narasimhanand’s latest statement, calling him a “fraud” and a “jihadi”. Mishra actively raised funds for the Dasna temple in April, but has since changed his stance on supporting the priest.

Right-wing ideologue Shefali Vaidya said she was “sorry that she made a mistake of judgment in supporting this man”, adding that she felt “terrible” about it.

Filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri did not name Narasimhananda, but said glorifying a saffron-clad “idiot” says more about Hindus than “these thugs”.

“Hindu society has always been a victim of deception” Sainthandjob Babas. Every Hindu knows this. Still, don’t improvise,” he said.

strict vigil

Apart from the striking police presence, Dasna Devi Temple is defined by a sense of exclusion and vigilance at every turn.

Not only is entry barred if a valid identity card is not presented, Narasimhananda’s associates walk around at sunset with guns as a “security precaution”.

A colleague with a gun to his hip deleted some of the photos to ThePrint photographer Manisha Mondal, “because it wouldn’t look good”.

The priest is 'guarded' by his gun-pointing associates.  Photo: Manisha Mandal/ThePrint
The priest is ‘guarded’ by his gun-pointing associates. Photo: Manisha Mandal/ThePrint

The temple is also set to install 100 cameras with money donated by devotees to “secure” the area and “protect” Narasimhananda from attacks.

The Uttar Pradesh Police has extended its support to Narasimhanand, even though he is the subject of several FIRs. He has more than six counts of alleged rioting, spreading communal hatred and taking up arms, but has so far managed to evade arrest.

Police told ThePrint that they protect Pujari because of “threats to his life.”

Mussoorie Station House Officer (SHO) Shailendra Pratap Singh, under whose jurisdiction the Dasna temple falls, told ThePrint, “His life is in danger and after the latest attack, we deployed police personnel there so that the situation does not worsen. ” . “The guns fired by his associates are licensed. Police were stationed there earlier also, but not in such large numbers. We have kept more people after the attack earlier this month.”

The SHO said he could not say when the security would be reduced, and that all pending cases against Narasimhanand were based out of Ghaziabad and outside his jurisdiction.

The priest says it has nothing to do with politics.

“I am a follower of Yogi Adityanath, but other than that, I stay away from politics,” Narasimhananda told ThePrint surrounded by his devotees.

narasimhanand claim to be educated in Russia, and he turned to Hindutva after having “reveled” about the alleged exploitation of Hindu women at the hands of Muslim men.

Asked about the uproar caused by his latest statements among BJP leaders, many of whom follow his lectures, Narasimhanand said, “The BJP leaves its own to die without protection.”

By his own admission, the kind of protection he deems appropriate is to circumvent the rule of law. “If a Muslim attacks a Hindu, he should be killed on the spot. Where are you going to wait for the court and the police to step in?” he said, with personnel in uniform, the irony being lost on him.

Around the audience, Narasimhananda’s actions become more demonstrative. When a camera is turned on, he easily changes his voice to a scream as he reads the lines he has practiced several times before, booming, “Islam is not a religion. Look at Kashmir, look at Afghanistan. Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba, ISIS, this is the real face of Islam.

When the camera is off, he laughs with his devotees, who fuss over him, and tells them, “My body may pass, but my words will last forever,” as he nods.

(Edited by Arun Prashant)

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