The controversial Sri Rama Sene leader, Pramod Muthalik made a bizarre request on Thursday saying, “Let Hindus chant Hanuman Chalisa in mosques”, in response to the ‘Iftar Koota' organised at the Udupi Sri Krishna Temple.
The right-wing group, which strongly condemned the ‘Iftar Koota', has decided to hold a protest against Pejawar Swami, Paryaya Sri Vishweshateertha on July 2.
"Members of Sri Rama Sene will hold a protest at Lalbagh Circle on July 2 from 11am to 12pm condemning the ‘Iftar Koota' which was held at the Math premises. We request all the members of the Hindu community to join us in large numbers in this protest. We too expect communal harmony from Muslim community. If Pejawar Swamiji arranges for us to perform Hanuman Chalisa at a mosque, we will withdraw our protest,” Dharmendra, state convenor of Hindu Maha Sabha and Sri Rama Sene backed up Muthalik’s statement.
The pro-Hindu leader said that the seer “should stop playing politics in the name of religion” as it “does not suit his disposition”.
“Sri Krishna Math belongs to all members of the Hindu community and not to any single person. If Pejawar Swamiji has so much concern for the Muslim community, let him organise the ‘Iftar Koota' outside the Math. We strongly condemn holding Iftar inside the Math. We also condemn the statement made by Pejawar Swamiji that the land of Sri Krishna Math was donated by Haji Abdullah. Pejawar Swamiji should know that this country was always a Hindu Rashtra and Muslims came here later,” he added.
Praveen Walke, the Sene’s State Chief Secretary said that the seer’s move had “saddened the sentiments of Hindu community” and said that the idea to organise an ‘Iftar Koota' was “nothing but political conspiracy ahead of forthcoming elections”.
“Four years ago when Janardhana Poojary hosted ‘Iftar Koota' at Kudroli temple and BJP protested against the issue. But today when the Swamiji hosted ‘Iftar Koota', BJP stood by him. For the past 30-40 years, Swamiji did not host any ‘Iftar Koota' for the Muslims. But now all of a sudden in the name of unity, Sri Krishna Math is hosting ‘Iftar Koota'. He should know the history of this country. Hindu religion existed from ages and Muslims came later to this country,” he added.
Stating that the Hindu-Muslim rift started after the Ayodhya incident where members of both communities were killed, Walke said that the seer, as a “national leader, could have sorted out the issue of Ayodhya in the name of unity”.
“Some leaders and religious leaders have poisoned the young minds which has resulted in several clashes between the two communities," he added.