DCsOfIndia, a Twitter handle, which claims to bless grassroots action by IAS officers, acquaint a cheep bygone (25 October) which has generated a lot of altercation on amusing media.
“Salute to adolescent #IAS administrator #RitikaJindal for breaking age old biased attitude by assuming ‘havan’ at Shalooni temple, Solan HP. She additionally accomplished acquaint of adequation to priests, others. This bold administrator shows us accurate spirit of #Dussehra,” the handle posted.
The actuality that the annual couldn’t alike spell the name of the temple appropriate (it’s Maa Shoolini, not Shalooni) and put the chat havan in distinct quotes apparently explains why it is adulatory an act of a adumbrative of civilian government interfering in religious diplomacy of a community.
Nevertheless, the activity is this: Administrator Jindal was visiting the temple bounds to analysis for arrange during Navratri and she asked to participate in the havan that was actuality conducted. The priest reportedly banned adage women can’t participate in the havan. But Jindal, who is de facto the arch of temple administering by advantage of actuality an IAS administrator acquaint in Solan district, prevailed over the priest and affected him to do the rituals the way she anticipation fit.
Ritika Jindal, in an account to Solan Today, which was put on Facebook, appear her angle on the matter. The IAS administrator can be apparent disturbing to assemble a distinct book in authentic Hindi (the accent of bodies she serves) afterwards resorting to her English vocabulary. Added ambiguous is her worldview which can be interpreted by acceptance of words such as patriarchy, orthodoxy, continued captivated but anachronous rituals, etc.
For a moment, one can abash her with an administrator from the colonial era with a antipathy for bounded ability and traditions, incomprehensible to her avant-garde and European sensitivities. But conceivably that’s the better accomplishment of the British rule. Alike afterwards seven decades, India’s apprenticeship and its institutions never decolonised and decoupled themselves from the ability of its bygone masters.
This adventure has acutely created a lot of abuse and abounding are ambitious that the government sacks her. One wonders what this will accomplish except authoritative her a gender-rights activist. Such counterproductive campaigns usually do added abuse than good.
Nevertheless, while such angle of an Indian government administrator are ambiguous for they allege volumes about our apprenticeship arrangement and inherent weaknesses of Hindu parenting, the key catechism that needs to be tackled is this: what business does an IAS administrator accept alteration rituals in a temple?
The acumen why admiral like Ritika Jindal are interfering in Hindu religious diplomacy is because they accept been put in allegation of temples by the governments in accompaniment afterwards state. This activity is alone the latest altercation which highlights the perils of the government takeover, ascendancy and administering of alone Hindu places of worship.
In 1984, the again Congress government beneath the administering of Virbhadra Singh, anesthetized ‘The Himachal Pradesh Hindu Public Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments’ Act. It was a bipartisan activity with alone one BJP MLA opposing the move by the accompaniment assembly.
The abandoned backslider was Ram Rattan Sharma who was additionally a priest. He had said that the act was ‘a little too harsh’ and ‘bordered on active and arrest in Hindu religious affairs’ but his arguments were “received with cheeky amusement alike from his own partymen, banishment him to agilely leave the house.”
Of course, the BJP is none the wiser today. Otherwise it wouldn’t be repeating the aforementioned aberration by demography over temples left, appropriate and centre in neighbouring Uttarakhand. Alike in Himachal, the BJP has adapted this 1984 act to booty over added temples and authorization how their funds and gold is to be spent.
In 2010, the BJP government in the accompaniment allowable a assertive bulk of temple gold to be deposited for SBI Gold Bond scheme. In 2018, it afflicted the act ensuring that temples absorb 15 per cent of their funds on architecture and advancement cow sheds.
The account provided for demography over temples consistently revolves on the assumption of convalescent the administering of the temple. The anecdotal is congenital to demonise the priests as acquisitive and corrupt. And all too commonly, whenever the critics allege the government of interfering in Hindu religious places, those are met with derision and amusement from the government faithfuls aloof as it happened with Ram Rattan Sharma in 1984.
But history has accurate Ram Rattan Sharma right. The 1984 act was absolutely callous which fabricated some of the best important temples accountable to whims and fancies of a government appointed commissioner, a position which was vested with abundant admiral in affairs of accessories and abatement of pujarin and trustees, acknowledging budgets or expenditures, burglary admiral begin to be absent in their job, analytical temple backdrop and funds at will, etc.
In fact, the admiral of the abettor or added admiral appointed beneath the act are so complete that they cannot be challenged in any civilian cloister but alone the aerial cloister and Supreme Court.
Every temple is appropriate to advance a annals assuming the origin, the names of the accomplished and present trustees, community or uses apropos assumption to the appointment of trustee, the approach of administering and calibration of expenditure, capacity of salaries, duties and altitude of service, capacity of all assets, particulars of actual records, coloured pictures of the idols, etc, and this is active by the commissioner.
Every transfer, barter or auction of temple acreage requires above-mentioned sanction of the commissioner. Anyone in the administering begin actionable the rules can be beatific to bastille for a year.
Section 8 of the act says that ‘The trustee of a Hindu Public Religious Institution and Charitable Endowments shall backpack out all orders fabricated and admonition accustomed by the Abettor beneath the accoutrement of this Act.’
Section 19 of the act says that ‘The Abettor may suspend, abolish or abolish the trustee or a pujari of any Hindu Public Religious Institution and Charitable Endowment,….(b) for wilful defiance of any adjustment issued beneath the accoutrement of this Act by the Abettor or the Government’.
(Read the abounding act here)
No wonder, again that back IAS administrator Ritika Jindal absitively to adjustment the priest to chase her command in the way temple rituals are to be followed, he had to angle the knee because he, the assistant of goddess, may not alone lose his job but additionally be beatific to bastille if he refuses to chase the orders of the assistant of the government.
Though the angle of the alone administrator in catechism accession accurate apropos about our apprenticeship arrangement and the akin of deracination amid English-educated youth, the amount activity that this contempo altercation has apparent is the peril of government ascendancy of temples. It charge be against by all Hindus irrespective of whether the BJP or a Congress government is bringing a law to booty over their angelic spaces.
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