Recently Jain Muni Shri Tarun Sagarji Maharaj gave a speech in Haryana State assembly, on the Friday 26th August 2016. He was invited by the state’s education minister and the revered monk spoke on various social issues. Shri Tarun Sagarji maharaj is famous for his ‘Kadve Vachan’, as when he speaks, he speaks without sugar coating issues. But this noble gesture took an ugly turn when some Liberals took on twitter to show their displeasure on how a Saint can be called to address an assembly, that too a ‘Nude Monk’.
These are some of the derogatory tweets and insults directed towards Shri Tarun Sagarji by the so called liberal folks of India..
And these are just few insulting tweets. Indian Express went a step further with even more shameful headlines on the same news , ‘Monk, in nude, talks of Pakistan, female foeticide, duty of wife in Haryana Assembly’. What was the need of highlighting the term nude? And this is not the only main stream newspaper which has insulted Jain way of life. It’s a known fact that for thousands of years all the Jain Tirthankar’s and Muni’s have renounced all worldly things including the cloths. And it was also not the first time a political event had a Jain Muni taking part in it. From Late Smt. Indira Gandhi to Atal Bihari Vajpayee to our Former President Shri APJ Abdul Kalam to even Sonia Gandhi, many political leaders have sought blessings from Jain Sadhus who were nude. Yes this maybe the first time a Muni was addressing an assembly but why so much hatred shown for that?
Over the years many political parties have done many religious functions in Prime Minister’s residence or the Rashtrapati Bhavan. How is that different from this? Only difference was that It was a Muni from Jain community which is has a population of only 4.2 Million and doesn’t have a vote bank. Jains are non-violent and hence prove to be an easy target for many. And not to forget the same people applauded when the Pope was addressing United States Congress. It is a normal thing in many countries where religious leaders speak on political forums.
Vishal Dadlani a known bollywood singer and song composer who joined AAP(Aam Adami Party) and Tahseen Poonawalla who appears as a congress spokes-person many times, also made insulting remarks and then later deleted their tweets. But Nothing on Social Media ever gets deleted. This is sickening beyond reason.. on how these people have hatred for Jainism.
And to make a mockery of things, Dadlani announced that he will quit all political activities and give resignation from AAP. AAP had earlier made fun of Sikh’s Holy text and people of this party are serious offenders of hurting religious sentiments of all religion and not just of Jains.
Many Jain’s are now filing FIRs against Vishal Dadlani and many others who have insulted our religion without even understanding the basic concept of it. Yes our Muni’s who are from the digambar sect remain nude, and it has been like that for thousands of years. We are not ashamed of it and even Muni’s try to make sure that people don’t get offended by this so they do take the necessary precautions. As an Indian first and as a Jain, I feel terribly hurt by all this. I feel weak and I feel hopeless when such things are done against my religion in a country where our constitution provides us the right to follow our religion without fear and prejudice, a religion which is one of the most peaceful loving one in the world. We don’t practice any form of violence nor do we preach hatred, we are not monolithic and we welcome everyone. Our last Tirthankar Bhagwan Mahaveer Swami had said,“ Live and Let live”. We strongly believe in India and we contribute towards the growth of India but it just pains when such things hurt our sentiments and perpetrators repeat this again and again knowing that Jain’s won’t answer back thinking we are weak.
I hope the Government of the day acts on this and people also do protest in a non-violent manner. We are always open for dialogue and we want peace but we don’t want to feel insulted and don’t take our peaceful ways as a sign of weakness.