VHP international secretary general Pravin Togadia told reporters in Ahmedabad that the "padshahi yatra" would commence from Godhra, the place where 58 karsewaks returning from Ayodhya were burnt in a railway coach on February 27.
Calling Godhra the "Somnath of Gujarat", he said the yatra would end in Ahmedabad on December 6, the 10th anniversary of demolition of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya.
"I want to tell the entire nation that there will be no violence at all during our yatra," he said. "It is a yatra of saints and the religious freedom of expression should not be curbed."
His remark comes a day after the Election Commission asked the state government not to allow the yatra on the grounds that such a procession might raise communal passions and disturb peace in the state.
The VHP leader also denied any plans to display the replica of the S6 coach of the Sabarmati Express that was torched on February 27, and said such reports were spread by the media, not the VHP.
He also showed the written permission for the yatra that had reportedly been obtained from the Panchmahals district magistrate late on Tuesday night.
Replying to a question, Togadia said 2,000 saints from all over the country would join the yatra from various places.
Maintaining that the Election Commission had no right to ban the VHP's yatra as it was a non-political organisation, Togadia said the commission was guided by media reports and the ban was akin to 'killing a child before it is born'.
He said the schedule for the yatra is yet to be announced formally.
Togadia accused Chief Election Commissioner J M Lyngdoh of misleading the nation and trying to impose his will on the masses. He said Lyngdoh was trying to be the chief minister and chief secretary of Gujarat as well as the collector of Panchmahals.
The VHP leader also charged the CEC with terrorising the Gujarat bureaucracy. "We have received permission to commence the yatra from Godhra and if it is stalled, the message that would go is that Lyngdoh has used fascist means to terrorise the bureaucracy here."
Continuing his tirade against the CEC, Togadia remarked that though there are only two major political parties in Gujarat, it now seems that there is a third one, which is represented by Lyngdoh.
Accusing Lyngdoh of favouring the Congress, he said that in Mount Abu Sonia Gandhi behaved as if she is the chief minister of 15 states, and Lyngdoh is now acting like the Congress president.
Togadia said Lyngdoh could very well have asked the VHP for details of the yatra, but the CEC preferred to believe certain media reports. He asked the CEC to prove that the yatra could incite communal passions.
Describing Chhatrapati Shivaji as the protector of Hindutva, Togadia said the slogan of the yatra would be 'Har Yuva Bane Shivaji' [every youth should be like Shivaji].
The aim of the yatra will be to remove twin obstacles in the path of the Hindu Rashtra --- pseudo-secularists and politicians involved in unabashed Muslim appeasement, Togadia claimed.
The VHP leader said he would lead the yatra along with Acharya Dharmendra and spread the message of Hindupat Padshahi [Hindu sovereignty] during the procession.
A rath [chariot] named Bhavani with the paduka [sandals] of Swami
Ramdas and the statue of Shivaji will be part of the yatra and the message of Hindu awakening will be preached, he said.
Togadia said the decision to hold such a yatra was taken during the shila daan at Ayodhya. It will pass through 75,000 villages across the country to preach Hindutva.
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