Sadhus, RSS orgs upset with MP CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan

The community of Sadhus is angry over the crude manner in which MP CM Shivraj Chouhan tried to win over support of a section of Sadhus by conferring Minister of State status to five selected Sadhus

Photo courtesy:
Photo courtesy:

LS Herdenia

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan continues to receive brickbats for his controversial decision to confer Minister of State status on five Sadhus. Among others he was criticised by an overwhelming section of Sadhus. Besides, he was also pulled up by some senior leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party. The latest round of criticism came in a meeting attended by representatives of various organisations affiliated to the RSS. The Chief Minister was also present at the meeting, held to review the political situation in the state. It also considered the implications of the decision, which some at the meeting termed as a bribe to win some Sadhus.

Meanwhile, Sadhus and Saints all over the country, particularly in North India, are up in arms against the Madhya Pradesh CM. The community of Sadhus is angry over the crude manner in which Chouhan tried to win over support of a section of Sadhus by the controversial decision.

These Sadhus were among those who threatened to launch an agitation with the objective of exposing the scams and corruption which took place during “Narmada Parikrama” undertaken by Chief Minister last year. During the parikrama, it was claimed that more than six crore saplings were planted on the bank of Narmada. These Sadhus alleged that the figure of six crore is highly exaggerated and that they have documentary proof to substantiate their charges. Perturbed over the implication of the exposure by the sadhus, the Chief Minister decided to please them. As part of strategy it was decided to confer ministerial status on all those who held out the threat to expose corruption.

The moment these Sadhus got the status of minister, they cancelled the stir against the Chief Minister’s Narmada seva yatra. The cancellation announcement provoked anger among other Sadhus. They held a press conference in Bhopal and announced that all the organisations of Sadhus have decided to join a common platform to condemn the Chief Minister’s action. The press conference was addressed by Shri Shri 1008 Mahamandaleshwar Swami Vairagyanand Giri Maharaj. He said Nagababus of 13 Akhada Parishads will hold nationwide demonstration to deplore Chief Minister’s “dirty trick” to bribe Sadhus. They will also boycott those Sadhus who sold their conscience. He further said that the Chief Minister had maligned the Hindu religion and the act is totally unpardonable.

The Chief Minister’s action has also been critised by some of his party men, including former Chief Minister Babulal Gaur and another veteran leader Raghunandan Sharma. Gaur took a dig at Computer Baba, who was trying to get a Rajya Sabha ticket through his political connections. He said the baba successfully got himself ministerial status without contesting elections or taking membership of the BJP.

“This seems to be eighth wonder of the world. The saints neither applied for party membership nor contested any election but got MoS status. Other saints in the state will be unhappy with the government’s decision since they also want to enjoy their share of power and security. If they manage to get such a status, they would also praise the government,” said Gaur.

Joining the chorus, BJP veteran and former Rajya Sabha member Raghunandan Sharma said the Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led government should not have struck such a deal with the saints. This would please a few but make the entire saint community unhappy and they will never favour the party.

“This decision by the government would spread animosity among the saint community, dividing them into pro- and anti-BJP groups. The government might have pleased a few saints but made 500 others unhappy and they will not support the BJP at all,” Sharma said, adding that “The government’s decision will create a bad precedent and promote blackmailing.”

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