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SPECIAL REPORT: Hindu organizations known for terror mischief, Bodh Gaya Serial Blasts seem to be their handiwork, says RTI Activist Aroop Brahmachari

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By Shafi Ahmad

It was long back in 1949 a politics was played by Hindus against Buddhists regarding the control over the management of the Mahabodhi Temple complex. It was then decided that the management will lay in the hands of Hindus and a committee was made as Bodh Gaya Temple Management Committee (BTMC). The representatives of the committee comprised of Hindus only, but when later strogly protested by Buddhists, it was then amended, and 4 Hindus and 4 Buddhists were made BTMC members with the District Magistrate of Gaya as its ex-officio Chairman.

Ever since the formation of BTMC, the Buddhists have expressed their displeasure over the inclusion of Hindus and have been demanding that the Mahabodhi Temple complex should be handed over to them for better management. The demand of Buddhists for excusive control over the Mahabodhi Temple has however been turned down time and again.

In retrospect, an RTI has been filed to know as to how many Buddhist temples are in the control and management of Hindus. The outcome is yet to be known. However, except Buddhist temples that remain under effective control of Hindus, other places of worship of minorities like those of Muslims and Sikhs strictly remain under their exclusive control without any interference from Hindus whatsoever. Even an inquiry was done physically to know whether any other member from other breakaway Hindu sects like Sikhs, Jains or Buddhists were also part of the management of the Vishnu Pad Mandir, the reply from Hindus was that we cannot let any people of other religions like Buddhists, Sikhs or Jains to interfere into our religion. 

The Buddhists are now rightfully asking after all why are Hindus continuing to interefere into our religious beliefs and temples when they don't allow any Hindu breakaway sects to interfere in their religious beliefs or temples. Hindus have contended that according to Lord Vishnu's Dashavatar, the ninth incarnation of Lord Vishnu is that of the Buddha. Considering this plea, some section of the Buddhists have accordingly demanded that they be allowed to have their say in the management of Vishnu Pad Mandir, which Hindus are not going to oblige Buddhists in any case.


Some of the Hindu members of BTMC have even allowed pind daan in the Mahabodhi Temple which has been objected to by the Buddhists several times. They have also written to the higher authorities also but all has fallen on the deaf ears of the Hindu authorities and the pind daan has become the regular feature of the Mahabodhi Temple.

Earlier, the Mahabodhi Tree was cut and smuggled, but no complete inquiry has been done or findings revealed. The audit, which was done to assess the expenditure and the donation, exemplifies the functioning and corrupt practices of the BTMC. Nearly Rs. 20 crore have been deposited into the different accounts and the interest being earned on this huge amount is not being accounted and nobody knows who is pocketing all the interest or which party's coffers is being filled. Much to chagrin, the accumulated money is also neither being used in the social work nor in any development work of the Mahabodhi Temple.

Despite warning issued by the IB of an impending threat to the Mahabodhi Temple by terrorists, the BTMC only put a security personnel to check the visitors before entering the Mandir. Otherwise, there was zero security in the Mahabodhi Temple complex.

Aroop Brahmachari, a RTI activist, has been writing regularly to the BTMC regarding the security of the Mahabodhi Temple but no reply has been received from the Home Secretary of Bihar, Chief Secretary of Bihar, DGP and the Gaya District Magistrate for which he says that there is a serious connivance among these people. The inclusion of the four monks in the BTMC has also been questioned in a RTI petition but that too hangs in suspense.

Former Bihar Urban Development Minister Prem Kumar who had provided the Mahabodhi Temple with the latest surveillance camera seemed to be only a wonderful piece of décor. Neither the photography is captured well nor the date is updated through this surveillance camera.

The way in which BJP has behaved during Bodh Gaya serial blasts is highly suspicious and brings their vicious role and behaviour into question. Mr. Priyapal (Chairman of Chakma Refugee) and RTI activist Aroop Brahmachari say that the fact that serial blasts may be the handiwork of the Hindu organizations also cannot be overlooked. They have been involved in such type of terror mischief before. They said that the National Investigative Agency (NIA) has done wonderful work earlier, like the Samjhauta Express blasts and other such developments, and they are quite hopeful that NIA will also try to bring out the culprits in Bodh Gaya serial blasts. "The state govt has taken the right step to hand the investigation to them and in no time the real culprit will be brought to light," said Aroop Brahmachari.

Mr. Priyapal and Aroop Brahmachari also said that the terrorists have attacked their holy place which is just like Mecca for us and it is attack on our hearts which is bleeding. The place which always propagated for peace and harmony has been tore apart and we have lost the faith in the government. The Mahabodhi Temple complex management should be immediately handed over to the Buddhists with their exclusive and complete control so that further destruction could be saved.

[Shafi Ahmad is a Journalist based at Gaya. He is Editor of Hindi Monthly magazine Jan Sansad. He can be contacted at gayawishafi@gmail.com]
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