BAMCEF under scanner for fuelling Koregaon-Bhima riots

Prateek Goyal
Wednesday, 25 April 2018

According to the police, BAMCEF has used its YouTube channel in instigating the riots at Koregaon-Bhima and then used it for spreading biased and distorted news against a particular group.

PUNE: The All India Backward and Minority Communities Employees Federation, which is commonly known as BAMCEF is under the scanner of Maharashtra police for instigating and fuelling riots in Koregaon-Bhima through their YouTube channel and by their active participation in Elgar Parishad.

The organisation which is currently headed by Waman Meshram has also been alleged of widely circulating distorted facts pre and post the Koregaon-Bhima violence incident on January 1. 

According to the police, BAMCEF has used its YouTube channel in instigating the riots at Koregaon-Bhima and then used it for spreading biased and distorted news against a particular group.

The organisation which was formed by Bahujan Samajwadi Party founder Kanshiram during his days at DRDO, Pune is under the scanner of State police for its active participation in Elgar Parishad.

On December 17, 2017, BAMCEF also published a Marathi book written by the name of Ek January 1818 Swantatrayache Bund (January 1 revolt of Independence) in which the writer has warned against large-scale riots against Brahmins if the role of honor affixed in the memory of 1965 and 1971 war heroes by Indian Army is not removed from Koregaon-Bhima memorial situated at Perne.

The writer of the book was one Professor Vilas Kharat and the preface of the book was written by BAMCEF President Waman Meshram.

Kharat has written in the book that the Britishers have established the victory memorial as a tribute to Nagvanshiy soldiers who took part in the battle of Koregaon-Bhima on January 1, 1818. 

However, the Central government has tried to erase the memory of the Nagvanshiy soldiers by affixing a plaque in the memory of soldiers of Indian Army who were martyred in the war against Pakistan in 1965 and 1971.

The book further states that the 29 soldiers of Indian Army whose names were scripted on the plaque under the heading of ‘role of honour belong to a particular upper caste (Brahmin) community and is a conspiracy to delete the history of Koregaon-Bhima battle as the victory memorial has not gone down well with the BJP government. The government is doing nuisance and such nuisance will lead to a large scale riots against Brahmins.”

Kharat further states in the book that the ‘role of honour’ should be immediately removed by people and there is no harm in it. If the role of honor is not removed before January 1, 2018, there will be a public outrage against Mohan Bhagwat and Devendra Fadnavis.

Meshram has written in the preface that the state and Central government has demeaned the victory memorial of Koregaon-Bhima battle by affixing the plaque of upper caste soldiers of Indian Army who died in the war of 1965 and 1971. 

The government has also demeaned the honour of martyred soldiers in wars against Pakistan by putting their name at Koregaon-Bhima memorial. He further states that if the government doesn’t have money to create the memorial for Indian army soldiers, his organisation can provide the funds to erect a separate memorial for them.

Bipin Bihari Singh, DGP (Prisons) with the additional charge of Law and order, said, “The activities of organisations like BAMCEF are on record with us as they are involved in fuelling riots. They have done mass mobilisation in carrying out their motives. All organisations which have taken part in the Elgar Parishad are under our scanner and we are investigating their roles.” 

Despite making repeated attempts, Vilas Kharat was unavailable for comment.

When questioned Prem Kumar, General Secretary of BAMCEF about their alleged role in instigating the riots, he said, “Our organisation is busy with some work and we will reply to your questions later.”

A six-member fact-finding committee on the Koregaon-Bhima violence has claimed that Maoists organisations conspired the Koregaon-Bhima violence on its 200th commemoration. Capt Smita Gaikwad, a fact-finding committee member, said, “There should be an investigation in the role of organisations like Kabir Kala Manch and Republican Panther who from last few years are trying to fuel the sentiments of people during the annual celebration of Koregaon-Bhima by spreading distorted facts. She further stated that BAMCEF has published a book which has a highly objectionable script.”

Former Pune MP Pradeep Rawat who was addressing the press conference along with fact-finding members, also questioned the role of Pune Police Commissioner Rashmi Shukla, Vishwas Nangare Patil, IG Kolhapur range and Pune Rural SP Suvez as they failed to control the riots. He also alleged that Prakash Ambedkar has become a sympathiser of Maoists.

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