Bihar home secretary H C Sirohi said that a paper recovered from the pocket of the assailant who shot at and injured former Union minister Ravishankar Prasad at a Bharatiya Janata Party election rally at Nokha in Rohtas district had 'VHP' scribbled on it. The Vishwa Hindu Parisha promptly denied having any link with the man, who is battling for life.
"The slip recovered from the pocket of the youth has VHP scribbled on it," Sirohi told reporters and said the local administration was trying to ascertain if he had links with any organisation.
Meanwhile, Bihar BJP president Sushil Kumar Modi and organising secretary of VHP's Bihar unit Radhamohan Singh have strongly denied any link with the assailant, identified as Munna Rai alias Hulchul Rai of Karamhansi village of Rohtas district.
"Umesh Paswan, our Rohtas district secretary, who visited the Sasaram hospital personally to ascertain whether he was a man of our organisation found that the man was unknown to him," Singh told PTI.
"VHP is a closely knit organisation and we know each other. It is an attempt to tarnish our image," he said.
Reacting sharply to the report, Modi said, "It is an attempt to malign the organisations related to the Sangh ahead of the polls."
He charged that the administration had 'planted' the paper in the assailant's pocket several hours after he was beaten unconscious by the crowd after the assassination attempt to discredit the VHP.