Udupi: Sri Vishweshatheertha Swamiji of Paryaya Pejawar Matt recalled the criticism he had to face when he had visited a Harijan Colony way back in 1977 in a bid to eradicate the evil of untouchability in Hindu Samaj.
“Several matt chiefs had condemned my visit back then,” said the Swami speaking to media persons on the second day of the Dharma Sansad on November 25. However, several matt chiefs have now joined hands and are supporting the fight for eradication of untouchability from the society, he said.
Stating that all are equal in Hinduism, the Seer urged to do away with the caste system “created by British and Muslim rulers for their own benefits.”
Further, he said, “If we overcome this social evil by treating people of lower castes, Dalits as one among us, sit and dine together, the prevailing caste and untouchability system will gradually be eradicated and moreover it will help aid, solve the issues surrounding inter caste marriages.”
Responding to a query on construction of Ram Mandir, Swamiji said, “We want Ram Mandir to be built at the birth place of Sri Ram at any cost. The Supreme Court has given a favourable verdict on Ram Mandir. The plan of construction of Ram Mandir cannot stop and it will be constructed soon.”
On the issue of reservation, Pejawar Swamiji said that there should not be partiality between the majority and minorities.
During the press meet, Surendra Kumar Jain, Joint Secretary of International VHP, said that untouchability found no mention in the Vedas or other Shastras. He said that the VHP would organise for the Dalits to lay the foundation stone for Ram Mandir with the belief, “One temple, one well, one meal for all the Hindus in one platform.”
Further, he mentioned that taking over of temple administration by the state government should be stopped and it should be entrusted to the temple management committee. “The government is trying to take over management of temples but not that of mosques or churches. The government is only after the money and the property of temples”, he said.
On conversion, Surendra Kumar Jain said that it had led to lots of clashes and unrest in the society. About 99 percent Christians and nearly 95 percent Muslims were converted from Hindusm in India. “Presently, we want to bring strict law on conversion, but do not want forceful ‘Ghar Wapsi’.”
Answering the question regarding the absence of Sri Ravi Shankar at the Dharma Sansad, Prof. M B Puranik, Organising Secretary of Dharma Sansad said that since yesterday night he was in constant touch over phone and had enquired about the outcome of the Dharma Sansad. If possible he will arrive to Udupi, but it depends on his time availability, he added.
Pejawar Matt Swamiji, Dr. Surendra Kumar Jain and Prof. M B Puranik were present during the specially arranged press meet.