Too many controversial dialogues, going out of his spiritual frame and associating with political party are not liked by the people who look at Sri Sri Ravi Shankar as a spiritual leader. He was addressing at a seminar titled ‘Paigam-e-Mohabbat’ and left the session midway after uproar by the audience at Sheri Kashmir International Convention Centre (SKICC) in Srinagar. He had to cut short his speech. Some of the people who had come from several districts including Shopian, Pulwama, Budgam were made to sit for long hours without any food and water by the organisers.
Some of the audience even left the seminar halfway as they alleged that they were told that Pakistani diplomat will also attend the seminar, but felt cheated when they didn’t find any. Meanwhile, Sri Si Ravi Shankar in his speech said that the event named Paigam-e-Mohabbat (message of love) was aimed to heal the hearts and bring about reconciliation among people who have directly suffered in the long-drawn conflict in Jammu & Kashmir. The seminar was organised by little-known Jammu Kashmir Coordination Committee (JKCC) and despite tensions in the Valley after the recent killings in Shopian, the organisers managed to gather impressive audience for the seminar.
In 2014, around pre-polls, Sri Sri gave a statement that if Narendra Modi comes to power, government might push Rupee between the range of 40 and 45 per dollar. He was also very active in supporting all the protests against Congress. Now, he is busy spreading the words for BJP’s win in Karnataka. His controversial statement on India turning into Syria if the Ram temple issue is not resolved created storms. Syria is embroiled in a civil war where multiple forces are fighting each other for control of the country. Rebel forces are fighting to unseat President Bashar al-Assad’s government, which has the support of Russia and Iran while the other side is getting help from the US and Saudi Arabia. In the last two weeks, the Syrian crisis has made major headlines across the world after more than 600 people have so far been killed in Eastern Ghouta. The people in Kashmir were told that there is a function in Srinagar and people whose sons have been killed in the last two decades will be given monetary compensation and jobs. They waited, but they had no idea that Ravi Shankar was coming to lecture them. Organisers promised them money and made them sit for hours without food and water. Dozens of agitating men and women left the venue in haste, forcing the spiritual guru to cut short his speech. The police was called in to deal with the situation, after which the protesters dispersed peacefully.
Ravi Shankar claims that the Muslims should give up their claim on Ayodhya as a goodwill gesture and Ayodhya is not a place of faith for Muslims! He tries to use his position to politically help BJP and damage AAP’s position. This sounds more like the tag line of some of the contemporary media houses. He is selling his knowledge about God’s true nature or scripture knowledge at a huge fee. Guru as one should know should provide knowledge and guidance for free and in return should never ask anything back. But he is one of the richest spiritual leaders of the country, who is the backbone of BJP. His efforts towards making of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya have always left an impression that he is biased towards a particular community. Perhaps this is the reason he is not much liked by the people of Jammu and Kashmir.
Earlier, Nirmohi Akhara too denied Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s statement that they had met him for peaceful negotiations on the Ram Mandir issue. In the past one year, Sri Sri has interacted with more than 500 leaders in Ayodhya, Bengaluru, Lucknow, Delhi, Hyderabad, and Chennai personally or through video conferencing. Recently, he met expelled AIMPLB member Salman Nadvi and has plans for a meeting with Muslim scholars and Ulemas in Lucknow on March 28.
After meeting Nadvi last week, he had said, “Our efforts are on… towards success and the response from all sides is very good. We will continue (our) efforts. We are talking about maintaining love and harmony between two communities and for a grand Ram temple.”
Ram Mandir is altogether a different issue, but Sri Sri has made a really bad choice of having a political image, and directly, indirectly, craftily and diplomatically supporting BJP without any clauses. The best I can say about him is that he will support Modi even when he does not deliver on his promises. In his own words, “Heaven is where promises are kept and hell is where promises are not kept.”
He is enamoured by Modi because he apparently does yoga and Sudarshan Kriya everyday, he is not able to see through the heavy propaganda and fake photoshops. He is not cheating per se, but it is just that he is not ready to see through the propaganda and the false imagery. The Modi wave has made him blind to every single fault within BJP. Till date he has never talked about even a single bad thing about BJP. If Sri Sri doesn’t realise what is bothering people, one day he might lose good followers and listeners. He should walk the spiritual path that he had chosen than poking his nose over political matters.
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