Hindustan Surkhiyan Desk:The Madhya Pradesh government has accorded the Minister of State status to five ‘babas’.
As per the order of General Administration Department’s Additional Secretary K K Katiya, the MoS status has been accorded to Narmadanand Maharaj, Hariharanand Maharaj, Computer Baba, Bhayyu Maharaj and Pandit Yogendra Mahant.
On March 31, the five religious leaders were appointed to a committee set up for the conservation of the Narmada river.
#MadhyaPradesh government to grant Minister of State rank to Baba Narmadanand, Computer Baba, Bhaiyyu Maharaj and others; to also appoint them in a committee formed for raising awareness about water conservation, cleanliness and aforestation near Narmada river pic.twitter.com/X7unVQfLVf
— ANI (@ANI) April 3, 2018
As members of the committee, they have been given the MoS status, a GAD official was quoted as saying by PTI..
According to reports, all the five ‘sadhus’ were to take out a Narmada Ghotala Rath Yatra against the Shivraj government, to expose corruption in river Narmada conservation work.
We thank the govt on behalf of the 'sadhu' community for showing trust in us, we will try our best to work for welfare of the society: Computer Baba, on being granted Minister of State rank by #MadhyaPradesh govt. pic.twitter.com/wfKXmaroGL
— ANI (@ANI) April 4, 2018
Assembly elections are due in the state later this year, and main opposition Congress has dubbed the decision an attempt by the BJP to exploit the respect the religious leaders enjoy in society.
Shivraj Singh Chouhan defended his move, saying “We want every section of the society to work towards development and welfare of people and that is why we have attempted to bring together each section of the society”.