Thursday, July 25, 2024
HomeNews ReportsJain monk dies after fasting unto death over Jharkhand govt's decision to turn Shri...

Jain monk dies after fasting unto death over Jharkhand govt’s decision to turn Shri Sammed Shikharji into a tourism hub

Jain Muni Sugyesagar Maharaj died on Tuesday after fasting for the last ten days against the Jharkhand government's decision on the Shri Sammed Shikharji pilgrim centre. 

A Jain monk in Jaipur breathed his last on Tuesday after undertaking a fast unto death against the Jharkhand government’s decision to turn one of the holiest pilgrim centres of Jains, Shri Sammed Shikharji, into a tourism hub. 

Jain Muni Sugyesagar Maharaj died on Tuesday after fasting for the last 10 days against the Jharkhand government’s decision on the Shri Sammed Shikharji pilgrim centre. Jain monks often observe fast unto death as a form of penance to either purify their soul and attain salvation or as a means of protesting against injustice inflicted upon them and their community.

Sugyesagar was on fast unto death in Sanganer from 25th December against the Jharkhand government’s move to turn Shri Sammed Shikharji into a tourist hub. But his health deteriorated on Monday evening and he eventually succumbed to 10 days of fasting. 

His Dol Yatra, a shorthand for the ritualistic practice by Jains of carrying out a procession with the mortal remains of a monk, was taken out from Sanghiji temple in Sanganer, Jaipur.

Jharkhand government decides to turn Shri Sammed Shikharji into a tourism hub, triggering widespread protests from the Jain community

The death comes hot on the heels of countrywide protests by the Jain community against the Jharkhand government’s move to develop Shri Sammed Shikharji as a tourism centre, a decision that members of the Jain community and their monks believe would chip away at the region’s spiritual significance and make way for the commercialisation of a pilgrim centre from where 20 out of the total 24 Tirthankaras of the current cycle attained salvation.

Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Bhopal, New Delhi, Surat, and many other cities saw large crowds of Jains protesting against the Jharkhand government’s decision to promote religious tourism at Parasnath Hills, claiming that it would tarnish the sanctity of Shri Sammed Shikharji. The protests have continued this week, with thousands of protesters in several cities across the expanse of the country hitting the streets and demanding a rollback on the Jharkhand government’s decision.

As a part of the Tourism Policy launched this July, the Jharkhand government decided to promote religious tourism at Parasnath Hills. Every year, thousands of Jains from across the world. undertake the 27 km long trek of climbing the hills to reach the summit that houses the salvation shrines of 20 Tirthankaras. Besides, the hills are also considered holy by the members of the Santhal tribe, who regard it as ‘Marang Buru’ and hold an annual festival here in mid-April.

However, since then, Jains have been protesting against the state government’s attempt to shorn off the religious character of the site and turn it into a tourism cash cow. The protests reached a crescendo on January 1, when thousands of Jains hit the streets demanding a rollback of the Jharkhand government’s decision. 

Join OpIndia's official WhatsApp channel

  Support Us  

Whether NDTV or 'The Wire', they never have to worry about funds. In name of saving democracy, they get money from various sources. We need your support to fight them. Please contribute whatever you can afford

Jinit Jain
Jinit Jain
Writer. Learner. Cricket Enthusiast.

Related Articles

Trending now

Recently Popular

- Advertisement -