Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat visited injured Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Tarun Vijay in the hospital on 21 May. Vijay was attacked by a mob after he visited a temple in Chakrata on 21 May along with a local activist Daulat Kunwar.
Rawat assured him that strict action will be taken in the matter. He said that nobody can be stopped from going to a temple as God belongs to all.
"The DM and SSP are on the way to the spot of the crime. The commissioner will give me a firsthand report and we will take stringent action accordingly. People's rights should be recognised and nobody can be stopped from going to a temple as God belongs to all," Rawat told the media before meeting Vijay.
"We are persuading the people and changes can be seen. Public awareness also needs to be cultivated in the matter. Yes, customs should be respected, but you can't stop someone from worshipping. I want to call on all religious leaders in the state to open the doors of their temples to people from all faith and also to the Dalits. After all, everyone is human," Rawat said.
He also said that while the guilty would be punished, those who failed to prevent the untoward incident would also not be spared. The CM also said that action would be taken against the guilty by the evening of 21 May. Rawat condemned the attack and demanded to know how attacks on the basis of caste and religion could happen in the 21st century.
After he met the injured MP, Rawat said that Vijay's condition was stable and that the doctors were happy with the line of treatment given to him, adding that he has conveyed to the medical team of complete assistance from the state government.
"I told the doctors that if we need to bring in specialists from outside, that can also be provided. I have also told them that if he needs to be transported somewhere else for further treatment, then we can provide a chopper. But the treatment being provided here is really satisfactory. Even Tarun Vijay is happy with this treatment," Rawat said.
DGP MA Ganapati told the media that a team has been constituted to help the police. A case in the matter has been registered with the revenue police and further action will be taken against the culprits.
"Where the incident happened does not come under the police jurisdiction but since a VIP team was going to the location, we sent a team for personal security," Ganapati said.
Vijay was on a campaign to allow Dalits in the temples in the Jaunsar-Bawar region when the incident occurred on 20 May. A mob of at least 2,000 people threw stones when Vijay and Daulat Kunwar, a BSP leader from Chakrata, stepped out of the Silgur Devta temple at Punah-Pokhri village. A few policemen were injured in the scuffle and two police vehicles were damaged.