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    Showing posts with label Yogi. Show all posts

    Yogi Adityanath's assertions apart, co-existence of different cultures is at the crux of India's formation

    Whether one likes it or not, Yogi Adityanath, the powerful head of the Gorakhnath mutt, is now the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. His party, the BJP, has won the recent electoral contest convincingly, defeating all other competing forces. For many, the ascendance of Yogi Adityanath is unthinkable, while for others it is a positive development. A part of the existing narrative wants to allay the anxieties among those who belong to the ‘unthinkable’ crowd but painting him as a saint (in the social sense of the term and not in the literal theological sense) with certain extraordinary human qualities — a lover of animals, supported by minorities, simple lifestyle and such.

    In this age of media, such spins and counter spins compete. That is where reality is made, far away from actual truths on the ground. Given the attempted whitewashing of Yogi Adityanath, it is important to present some of Adityanath's public statements that he has not denied and try to see what are the ultimate implications of such a stance. More importantly, what are the repercussions of having a leader who believes in such stances while being the chief minister of the most populous Indian state.
    Much of what Yogi Adityanath has said is on public record. This article will not quote his whole speeches, but only portions that are relevant. Are those taken out of context? Possibly.  However, it is also the perspective of the reader or the listener who end up finding a context to these lines:

    This statement comes with certain issues. Uttar Pradesh has nearly 20 percent of its population comprising of Muslims. Now, whether Muslims of Uttar Pradesh have Islam as their culture, we don’t know since human cultures revolve around numerous things, including religion. Take for example, Yogi Adityanath’s decision to ban "illegal" slaughterhouses in Uttar Pradesh, which incidentally means most places where animal slaughter takes place in South Asia. These are non-cow slaughterhouses, since cow slaughter is banned in Uttar Pradesh. So, it affects non-cow meat eaters. I am a Bengali Shakto of Bengal. Meat is the prasad of Kali that we consume with respect and veneration. We sacrifice buffaloes, goats and various animals, not cows, to the holy mother and seek her blessings. We have been doing this for centuries. Our religious tradition is timeless. Yogi Adityanath is not. Yogi Adityanath will not take this prasad because he does not belong to that "culture".

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