Monday, Jun 10, 2002
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By Our Special Correspondent
Disclosing this to presspersons here on Saturday evening, the swamiji of Pejawar Math said he would be attending the meeting.
He believed that the issue could be resolved to the mutual satisfaction of religious leaders from both sides. The issue was getting complicated because of the involvement of political parties, which looked at it from the point of electoral gains.
It was time that the political parties considered the religious sentiments of the people and took steps to resolve the issue amicably, he added. Replying to a question, the swamiji said the Union Government should take initiative in convening meetings of religious heads from both sides on the issue. The ideal solution to the issue was to divide the disputed and the undisputed land and allow construction of a temple and a mosque. The Karnataka Muslim Panchayat had agreed to this suggestion.
The swamiji said that he had offered to construct 100 houses in Gujarat for the victims of communal violence. The damaged houses could also be repaired or reconstructed. More houses could be constructed if the Centre and the Gujarat Government reacted positively to his proposal.
He reiterated his stand that what had happened in Gujarat was a blow to the secular credentials of the country.
He said it was wrong to blame the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and the Bajrang Dal for the communal violence in Gujarat. It was the result of religious bigotry that was creeping into society over the years.
The swamiji opposed any move to ban the RSS and the Bajrang Dal as sought by those who attended a religious conclave in Bangalore recently. He disputed the claim that the demand for banning the two organisations was made by religious leaders. It was incorporated in the resolution passed at the conclave, he said.
The emphasis on casteism and criticism of Brahminism were unwarranted. The meeting should have focussed on religious fanaticism and not on casteism, he said.
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