Amid religious tension in Nashik, Raj Thackeray says locals should take a call

The matter arose when individuals from a different religion allegedly attempted to ‘forcefully’ enter the temple, seeking to offer incense as part of a tradition associated with a nearby dargah

May 20, 2023 09:21 pm | Updated 09:21 pm IST - MUMBAI

MNS chief Raj Thackeray.

MNS chief Raj Thackeray. | Photo Credit: PTI

Maharashtra Navnirman Sena president Raj Thackeray on May 20 said that residents of Nashik should make a decisive judgement regarding the ongoing Shree Trimbakeshwar Temple issue.

Last week, the matter arose when individuals from a different religion allegedly attempted to ‘forcefully’ enter the temple, seeking to offer incense as part of a tradition associated with a nearby dargah.

Following a complaint lodged by temple authorities, the police registered relevant Sections of the Indian Penal Code against four persons; the State government constituted a special investigation team to probe the matter.

Expressing his stance on the issue, Mr. Thackeray emphasised that the issue was of the local residents and they must decide. He discouraged external interference and questioned the halting of the centuries-old tradition.

“Outsiders must not intervene. If a tradition is on for years, then it is not right to stop it. Is our religion so weak that it will lose its purity and divinity if someone from another religion enters a temple,” he said.

The 54-year-old leader further pointed out that India was home to many temples and mosques where people from different faiths coexisted harmoniously.

“There are many temples and mosques in the country where there is mutual understanding among people (of different faiths). (In Mumbai), constables from the Mahim police station offer chaddar at Mahim Dargah. On the other hand, in some of our temples, only people of a particular caste are allowed,” he said.

Stating that resisting injustice was right, Mr. Thackeray said issues like loudspeakers in mosques and unauthorised dargahs coming up along the coast and in historical forts, must be tackled rather than creating such problems that cause riots.

“However, doing anything intentionally is not right. Riots do not take place where Marathi Muslims live,” he said.

“Riots do not take place where Marathi Muslims live”Maharashtra Navnirman Sena president Raj Thackeray 

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