The Nationalist Congress Party or NCP sought on Monday, a ban on the Sanatan Sanstha over its alleged links with a "bomb plot" and the killing of rationalists and opposed the right-wing group's demand to drop the word "secular" from the Constitution.
The Sharad Pawar-led party said those arrested in connection with seizure of explosives in parts of Maharashtra were often seen at events organised by the Sanatan Sanstha, but the Goa-based outfit is now distancing itself from them.
"Whenever someone is held, it (the Sanatan Sanstha) claims those held are not associated with it. Those who have been arrested were often seen at events of the Sanatan Sanstha or (its affiliate) the Hindu Janjagruti Samiti," Maharashtra NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik told reporters in Mumbai.
"It fears the government may come under pressure, leading to a ban on the outfit. The Sanstha is shrugging its responsibility. We demand the outfit be banned. The Centre should take immediate steps," Mr Malik added.
Speaking to the media separately, NCP chief Sharad Pawar trashed the right-wing group's demand to drop the word "secular" from the Constitution.
"It does not matter who says what. Only parliament has the right to change a decision made in parliament. And I don't think no party in the Parliament thinks so (about removing the word secular from the Constitution)," said the former Union minister.
The NCP chief made the remarks here after attending a meeting of the party's core committee and another with its senior leaders to discuss its activities in the run up to the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
Probe agencies suspect peopled linked with the Sanatan Sanstha were associated with the recently unearthed "bomb plot" and the killings of four rationalists-activists in Maharashtra and Karnataka since 2013, charges denied by the outfit.
The Sanatan Sanstha on Monday claimed persons arrested in connection with the seizure of explosives and arms in different parts of Maharashtra as well as for the four killings were not its "seekers".
It also claimed the term "secular" in the Constitution was vague and should be removed by parliament by bringing about an amendment.