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Why Jain protests are happening ?

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One of the most peaceful communities of India – Jain community, are on the streets these days with rebels.

Before diving to the main reason let’s first peep into the holy history of Jainism.

Sammeth shikharji is the pilgrimage site located in Giridih district of Jharkhand . It is the tallest mountain range in the state also known as Parasnath hill . It is a place where twenty of the twenty four thirthankaras attained moksha of both Digambara and Svetambara sects. Shikharji along with Ashtapad , Girnar , Dilwara temples of Mount Abu Shatrunjaya are known as Svetambara Panch Tirth ( five principal pilgrimage shrine ). During the regime of Mugal rule , emperor Akhbar in the year 1583 passes an official order of preventing the slaughter of animals in the vicinity of Shikharji hill. In the year 2019 , Delhi government included Shirkharji hills under Mukhyamantri Tirth Yatra Yogna .

What exactly is the matter ?

In Gujarat’s district, Palitana town, there is the Shetrunjay Jay Hill . On the hill there are Jain temples as well as a Shiva Temple which is known as the Nilkanth Mahadev Temple . Sheth Anandji Kalyanji pedi which is a trust has had disputes with the Nilkanth Mahadev Seva samiti . This was due to the Seva samiti’s mismanagement , Gujarat High Court had passed an order that the Shiva Temple can select a priest for the temple but that has to be done in consultation with the Anandji Kalyanji pedhi and the priest is paid by the Jain Trust . The court also said that anyone can visit and pray at the temple during the day however , no one will be allowed to stay on the hill at night . The dispute continued because of another incident on 16th December 2022 , a board and the iron poles holding the CCTV cameras were damaged along with the poles the Charan Paduka of the giant God were also vandalized . The entire incident went viral on 18th December 2022. A huge protest rally was organized against the vandalism of the Charan Paduka . The CCTV camera and the board people from across India supported the protest however , the priest of the temple Charananda Swami said that it was not his organization or any other Hindu organization that uprooted the CCTV poll . He said maybe it was done by some miscreants who want to create a rift between both the communities. He demanded strict action against the miscreant. After this controversy , the Gujarat government asked two MLAs to investigate the matter . It is learned that Jain samaj leaders are going to meet the chief minister.

Demands of Jain community:

  • Demands regarding the dispute the vandalism of Charan Paduka should be immediately investigated.
  • An appropriate action must be taken as it is a deeply religious place and must not be insulted .
  • The brewery of the foothills of the mountain should be removed or shut down.
  • The pressure of Lorry should be removed . They should be given an alternative arrangement .
  • Illegal mining along the Route and illegal constructions on the hill should be stopped .
  • Many senior citizens and people who cannot walk use palanquins to climb the hill. The leaders have demanded removal or change of the administration of the palanquin association.
  • The ministry of pilgrimage should be set up in jharkhand so that development of Siddha Kshetra Parshwanath mountain should be according to the faith of the followers . For Generations the place has been revered by Jains and has strict rules for devotees . Making it a tourist place would lead to people coming there for entertainment and spoil the Holiness of the place ,this is why the heavy protests against the government’s decision.

Former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Kamal Nath wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi as well as Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren to reconsider their decision .

AKANKSHA SINGH

B.Sc ( Hons) Horticulture Dr. YSR Horticultural University

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