KERALA

Call to support religious reformers

THRISSUR NOV. 1. The former State president of the BJP, C.K. Padmanabhan, has said that all sections of society should support those fighting religious superstitions and obscurantist practices from within the framework of each religion.

Participating in a debate on the film `Padham Onnu Oru Vilapam', which dwells on the problem of child marriages in Muslim community in Malappuram district, here on Friday, Mr. Padmanabhan said that outdated practices and rituals were prevailing in all religions and no community could be singled out on this count.

Even Hinduism was not free from many evils like casteism and suppression of the rights of women. But the reform initiatives in this religion could muster up public support and that was why it could undergo several changes throughout the ages, he said. Even today there were efforts to bring back the weird rituals like `Sati' and child marriage, he said. There should be unity of various sections cutting across religious and political barriers to fight such evil tendencies. But the general tendency now was to isolate those sections that were fighting such revivalist practices, he said.

Mr. Padmanabhan blamed the mainstream movements, particularly the Left movements, for not devoting adequate attention to the evil practices going on in certain sections of the minority communities. The so-called secularists relish attacking the evils in those communities, which were unorganised and had no vote banks. But they were scared of attacking the evils among the minorities who wield power by constituting strong vote banks, he said.

Mr. Padmanabhan criticised those raking controversy over the film `Uthara' which had made some adverse remarks against a temple ritual.

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