Pontiff criticises Centre's comments on Ram Setu

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Udupi, Jul 25 (UNI) Sri Vishvesha Thirtha Swamiji of Udupi Pejavar Mutt today criticised the Central Government for its comments in the Supreme Court yesterday that Lord Ram himself had destroyed the Ram Sethu.

Talking to newspersons here, the pontiff, before proceeding to Mumbai to participate in a two-month 'Chathurmasya Vratham,' said the religious text described that Lord Ram had called upon the people to visit and worship Ram Setu.

He said the latest misinterpretation of Ramayana would hurt the religious sentiments of the common people in the country. It was an absurd description of the scripture, he added.

The pontiff said Lord Ram had never ordered for the demolition of Ram Setu, as alleged by the Central government Counsel in the Supreme Court.

He said Ramayana stated that Lord Ram had ordered three divisions for the ritualistic maintenance and conservation of the Setu and this was further testified in ''Skanda Purana''.

Setu-Yatra, Setu-Darshan and Setu-Pooja were the three cardinal rituals suggested by the Lord himself for the future generation,'' he added.

He said the Supreme Court has rightly suggested for exploring alternative alignment for the Sethusamudram Channel Project(SSCP).

The pontiff urged the Government to protect Purandara Mandap and other historic places in Hampi, where illegal buildings had come up with encroachment of land for illegal activities. ''I will take up the matter with the Chief Minister shortly,'' he added.

He said India would not gain from the civil nuke deal.

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