India: Hindu right rallies around accused terrorists

Days after the arrest of nine by police in India’s Maharashtra state as a “terrorist cell” responsible for the September Malegaon attack, the Hindu nationalist Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) announced a campaign for their release. The nine, including Hindu nun Pragya Singh Thakur, is said to be linked to the right-wing Abhinav Bharat. The Congress has also accused the right-opposition BJB of having “direct links” with the blast. (Times of India, Nov. 15; NYT, Nov. 12; The Hindu, Oct. 29)

Violence spread across major towns of northern Bihar state last month in protests against an attack on north Indians by the activists of Raj Thackeray’s right-wing Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) in Mumbai. One youth was killed in the Mumbai attack. Trains were torched in Bihar in the angry protests. (Times of India, Oct. 27; Hindustan Times, Oct. 23)

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