Modi laments untouchability in politics

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi greets supporters at the Thiruvananthapuram International airport on Wednesday. Photo: S. Gopakumar  

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi has said the evil of untouchability persisted in the political sphere despite its eradication from social life.

Inaugurating the 51st Sree Narayana Dharma Meemamsa Parishad at the Sivagiri Madhom in Varkala, near here, on Wednesday, Mr. Modi lamented that untouchability was still present in politics though it had been eradicated to a large extent in social life by the efforts of reformers and spiritual leaders.

He was apparently referring to the controversy over his visit to the madhom and the decision of the ruling United Democratic Front (UDF) and Opposition Left Democratic Front (LDF) to stay away from the function, as well as the political row in Kerala over the meeting he had with Labour Minister Shibu Baby John.

He said the social reforms triggered by spiritual leaders such as Sree Narayana Guru and Ayyankali had laid the foundation for the freedom struggle and contributed to the country’s enduring culture.

“By linking social reforms to spirituality, they were able to achieve social transformation.”

Noting that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had recognised Gujarat for the State’s achievements in skill development, he said it was significant that a great leader like Sree Narayana Guru had recognised the importance of skill development 100 years back.

Observing that 65 per cent of the Indian population was below the age of 35, he said the youth represented the country’s demographic dividend. He, however, said empowerment of women and uplift of Dalits, Backward Classes and marginalised sections needed more attention.

Sree Narayana Guru’s vision and message of “one caste, one religion and one God for men” held a lesson and promised a solution for a world fighting to overcome the challenges of global warming and terrorism.

President of the Sivagiri Madhom Swamy Prakasananda presided over the function. Senior swamis of the madhom, office-bearers of the Sri Narayana Dharma Sanghom Trust, Bharatiya Janata Party State president V. Muraleedharan and party leader O. Rajagopal were present.

The police had a tough time controlling the surging crowds at the venue. Mr.Modi was cheered and applauded throughout his speech.

‘No politics involved’

PTI adds:

Earlier, Sree Narayana Dharma Sanghom Tust member Swamy Sachithananda said the political controversy over the invitation to Mr. Modi was unwarranted as the madhom had no politics.

Mr. Modi’s speech in Hindi was translated into Malayalam by Mr. Muraleedharan.

Ignoring the multilayer security at the Thiruvananthapuram international airport earlier, Mr. Modi walked to BJP workers who had converged in large numbers and greeted them by waving his hands.

Mr. Modi’s five-hour visit to the State came against the backdrop of the Left attacking the authorities of the madhom, which is dedicated to the ideals of 20th century saint-reformer Sree Naryana Guru who preached the message of unity of humanity, for inviting him to an important function.

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Printable version | Dec 6, 2021 1:58:04 AM |

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