The Jains on Wednesday again held a protest rally to reiterate their demand of officially declaring the community's two holy sites – Shatrunjay Giriraj in Gujarat and Shri Sammed Shikharji in Jharkhand – as religious places.
The community underlined that legal recourse will be taken if the ongoing talks with the Central and State Governments failed.
Several BJP leaders expressed solidarity with the cause by converging at Azad Maidan where the rally ended. Those in attendance were Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Rahul Narwekar, and party leaders Raj Purohit and Narendra Mehta.
Monk says that the two religious places have been in possession of Jains since times of Mughal king Akbar
“Shri Sammed Shikharji and Shatrunjay Giriraj were in the possession of Jains ever since the time of Mughal emperor Akbar. It was only after independence that they were not with us. We demand that these places be given to Jains. We also want that they should be declared as pavitra tirth sthal (religious sites) and not tourist places,” said monk Naypadmasagar Maharajsaheb. Also, alcohol and non-veg both should not be served within a 10 km radius, he added.
Bharat Jain Samaj chief said they will opt for legal recourse if govt talks fail
Rakesh Mehta, who is the president of 123- year-old Bharat Jain Samaj, said that they have raised the issue with the Maharashtra Government. “If it does not happen through talks, there will be no other option but to approach the court,” he said. But Naypadmasagar put his faith in Prime Minister Narendra Modi and hoped that the issue will be resolved amicably.
Jharkhand Tourism Minister says government will scrap prev BJP govt's notification
On Monday, Jharkhand Tourism Minister Hafizul Hasan said that if need be, the state will scrap the eco-tourism notification issued by the earlier BJP government and will issue a fresh notification stating that Shikharji is a religious place.
Advocate from community says issue is 'rising illegal encroachment by saffron fanatics'
Advocate Dhanpal Solanki from the community felt that the reason behind the issue is the “rising illegal encroachment by saffron fanatics that is also a cause of concern for us. The BJP is fooling (us)”. An agitation was held on Sunday, too.
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