Nevada (US), July 11 (ANI): Well known Hindu leader Rajan Zed's request to read opening prayer in Australia House of Representatives (AHR) has been denied.
Replying to Zed's request, AHR Speaker Harry Jenkins wrote in a communiqué: Unfortunately you cannot be scheduled to read the opening prayers as you have requested. The standing orders (rules of the House) require the Speaker to read the prayers at the beginning of each sitting, the form of which is set out in the standing orders and has not changed since 1901 except for some additional words introduced in 1918 for the duration of the war.
On Rajan Zed's another request for the possibility of Speaker to once read the opening prayer (Hindu) supplied by Zed, Jenkins replied: I'm afraid the standing orders do not permit the reading of any other form of opening prayers.
Currently, the Speaker reads the same prayer at the beginning of every sitting day, which includes Lord's Prayer, a well-known prayer in Christianity; and another prayer seeking God's blessings for the Parliament.
Meanwhile, Rajan Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, has urged Parliament of Australia to move to multi-faith opening prayers.
In a statement today, he said that since Australian Parliament represented every Australian irrespective of religion/denomination, it was quite befitting in this increasingly diverse nation to do a rotation of prayers representing major religions and aboriginal spirituality.
Zed has read the first Hindu opening prayer in United States Senate in Washington DC in 2007. (ANI)