Appointment of Brahmins Only to Government Managed Temples in Gujarat Mocks Ambedkar, Violates Constitution: Former DGP to Gujarat CM

Former DGP, Gujarat, RB Sreekumar, in a letter to Gujarat CM, Anandiben Patel calls for an end to the criteria of born Brahmins alone being appointed as priests in government managed temples in Gujarat..

In a detailed letter addressed to Gujarat chief minister Anandiben Patel, the former DGP, RB Sreekumar has pointed out that by appointing Brahmins only in nearly 80 state-managed temples as staff engaged in ceremonial, ritualistic and religious functions, the government is violating the Indian Constitution and making a mockery of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s claim of being “A torch bearer to carry on the work and principles of Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar”.

Making references to Dr BR Ambedkar’s writings (’Annihilation of Caste’, ’Riddles of Hinduism’, The Untouchables’, ’Buddha and Karl Marx’) the letter points out that, “Ambedkarism is not a set of metaphysical concepts or dogmatic socio-political theories. It is a product of application of lofty Indian spiritual ethos of Buddhism, and liberal western political ideas from the days of the French Revolution (1789), the anti-colonial struggles and upheavals for establishment of representative democracy guaranteeing fundamental human rights, inclusive distributive justice and equitable service delivery to the people by the State”.
The letter notes with regret that “those engaged in performing ritualistic worship and ceremonial duties along with temple staff employed for auxiliary services like providing articles of worship, preparation of prasad etc, are appointed to those posts exclusively from certain families from the caste of Brahmins”. What’s more, “Many devotees complain that some priests do not know and comprehend the conceptual, metaphysical and spiritual import of many Vedic Suktas and Slokas from Tantra Samucchaya of Parashurama, chanted during pooja (worship)”.

Citing slokas from the Vedas , Upanishads, Brahma Sutras, Bhagwat Gita and other Hindu scriptures, the letter argues that no one is born a Brahmin but becomes one through acquiring education and culture.

Maintaining that “the present system of illegal monopoly of one caste in temple worship service is obnoxiously obscurantist, besides being repugnant of basic structure of the Indian Constitution and pre eminent Hindu scriptures”, the letter urges the Gujarat chief minister to “constitute a Gujarat Temple Service (GTS), on the pattern of any self-contained government service cadre” and to ensure that “qualified women should also be inducted as priests in GTS”.

 The full text of the former DGP’s letter may be read here.



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