NEW DELHI: The controversy surrounding Ramcharitmanas refuses to die down with OBC leaders burning the copies of the Hindu epic penned by great sage Goswami Tulsidas in the state capital Lucknow and other parts of Uttar Pradesh. Video shared by Twitter users showed that several members of the Akhil Bharatiya OBC Mahasabha backed by the Samajwadi Party burning copies of the Hindu epic in support of their leader Swami Prasad Maurya, who has created a political storm by making objectionable comments on Ramcharitmanas.
In the viral videos, the OBC leaders can also be seen shouting slogans and calling for a ban on the epic.
कल अखिलेश जी से “स्वामी प्रसाद” मिले फिर अखिलेश जी मंदिर गये, आज सपा नेता स्वामी प्रसाद के समर्थन में “पवित्र ग्रंथ” रामचरितमानस को वृंदावन योजना लखनऊ में फाड़कर जलाया गया?
हम @Uppolice से दोषियों ख़िलाफ़ ‘FIR’ दर्ज करने की माँग करते हैं।https://t.co/28pr8NjWDi pic.twitter.com/lP1Yf7bzai
— Vikas Singh (@INDVikasS) January 29, 2023
Earlier, members of the burnt photocopies of the epic in Vrindavan. The protest was held in the Vrindavan Yojana sector expressing solidarity with Maurya, who had on January 22 in a statement said the “Hindu epic contained passages discriminatory of women and shudras.”
The right-wing outfits have demanded the registration of FIR and strict action against these protesters.
Maurya, a popular OBC leader in Uttar Pradesh, had kicked up a controversy by alleging that certain verses of the Ramcharitmanas “insult” a large section of society on the basis of caste and demanded that these be “banned.” Maurya, who was a cabinet minister in the BJP government, had resigned and joined the Samajwadi Party before the 2022 Uttar Pradesh assembly polls.
Reacting to the row, BSP chief Mayawati on Monday said that it is aimed at benefitting the ruling BJP and the Akhilesh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party. She also ridiculed the Samajwadi Party for taking no action against party leader Swami Prasad Maurya who had recently made objectionable remarks on the epic poem ‘Ramcharitmanas’ penned by great sage Goswami Tulsidas.
Top seers from Ayodhya – Mahant Raju Das of Hanuman Garhi temple and Paramhans Das of Tapasvi Chhavni – have declared a bounty for anyone who beheads Maurya for insulting the Sanatan Dharma and asked the BJP government to take strict action against such leaders.
Maurya, however, looks defiant and has said, “I will continue to oppose the conspiracies of insulting tribals, Dalits, backwards and women in the name of religion. The way an elephant is unperturbed by barking dogs and does not change its path, I too will not change my stance towards getting dignity for those (tribals, Dalits, backwards and women).”
Not only that, Swami Prasad Maurya also made a controversial statement against seers and saints, calling them monsters.