THE THREAT AGAINST HINDU TEMPLES AND VEDIC CULTURE IN INDIA This article shows how the Indian government is purposely jeopardizing the future of Hindu temples. With a little attention, anyone can see how Hindu institutions & Hinduism in India are unfairly targeted by acombination of Christian & Muslim Fundamentalists , vote bank politics & unscrupulous politicians & businessmen.Particularly alarming is the destruction of Hindu institutions & illegal mass conversions by other religions. Through the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowment Act, Hindu temples and Maths are taken over by stateGovernments in the name of better administration, while mosques and churches are completely autonomous. This Actallowed the state governments and politicians complete control over the temples and their property. Many abuses arecommitted by multiple state governments using the power accorded through this Act. In Andhra Pradesh under Chief Minister Y. Samuel RajasekarReddy, tens of thousands of acres of temple lands aresold away leaving temples with little economic basis. This is done without the permission of the local Hindu community. Thestate government and the endowments department whose duty is to safeguardthe temple properties have turned a blind eyeto such encroachments or take overs of temple properties. The state government recently went to the extent of regularizingencroachments at nominal prices. These encroachments are often found to be closely associated to various political parties. In Andhra Pradesh, Hindu temples, institutions and Hinduism itself are illegally targeted by the crusade of thegovernment. Under the Temple Empowerment Act, about .4,.00 temples are under government control. Only .8% of therevenue of these temples is said to be given back for temple purposes, while the remaining 8.% is used for other things bythe government at their discretion. Such looting, massive sale of temple lands, demolition of temples, encroachments oftemple properties, and the utilization of aggressive religious conversion tactics by Christians in the vicinity of temples isoccurring all over Andhra Pradesh. The government, which is supposed to be a protector has become a destroyer of theculture, which threatens the very existence of Hindu institutions. Even the world famous sacred temple at Tirumala-Tirupati is not spared. The government attempted to take over 5out of 7 Tirumala hills for churches and tourism. The 1000 pillar Mantapam inTirumala was illegally demolished. Recently inresponse to Sri Chinnajeeyar Swami’s petition, the Andhra Pradesh High Court has declared the demolition illegal andinstructed the TTD management at Tirupati to reconstruct it. If anyone has seen theTirupati temple and the difference thereis without the 1000 pillar hall, it is shocking. The Andhra Pradesh government also allowed the demolition of at least 10 temples for the construction of a golfcourse. The son of the Chief Minister even blew up the Sunkulamma Hindu Temple in Anantapur, and his brotherVivekananda Reddy, by constructing his own building, has encroached onGurukula trust lands worth crores of rupees. Whiletaking extra precautions to protect churches and mosques with money from the state treasury, the government has beenselling or donating,for various government schemes and non-Hindu purposes, tens of thousands of acres of temple landsworth thousands of crores of rupees that are meant for the perpetual sustenance of the temples. This will irreparably crippleHindu institutions. Temples and Maths that did not earlier come under government supervision are taken into government control forselling away their lands. The charge that 85 percent of the revenues is taken by the state exchequer was not denied by thestate government. The State Endowment Board with 77,000 employees, all of whom are supported by 15-18 percent of theincome from 33,000 temples, has done little for the welfare of the Hindu institutions. At the same time, priests of temples arepenniless and temples are decaying due to lack of maintenance. Hindu priests do not want to train children in priestlyactivities for lack of economical basis. This seems to be the goal of the government to systematically wipe out Vedic culturein general across India. Even while this is going on, the AP government pays 12,000 rupees per pilgrim for the Haj trip to Mecca, and isconsidering proposals to pay Christians for trips to Bethlehem. At the same time, the government has imposed a 50% raiseon the fares of state buses on MahaShivaratri day, like a tax that takes advantage of the Hindu community and makes iteven more difficult for them to observe their own holidays. Furthermore, the most important Hindu holidays, such asRamaNavami, are being taken off the government holiday list to be replaced by secular holidays. The net result of this strategic and planned selling of all temple properties, along with taxing the Hindu communitywhile providing funds for Christian purposes, seems to be designed to systematically and completely cripple Hinduinstitutions in the state with little hope for their survival. The Andhra Pradesh government Order 21 gave crores(tens ofmillions) of rupeesfor the renovation and construction of churches, thus, helping to pave the wayfor major Christianization ofthe state using illegal techniquesfor mass conversions. Almost all these activities are a violation of the Indian constitutionthat is supposed to separate the state and religion. The government also controls the media that ignore any Hindu representation. Even the rare newspapers like Eenadu that do represent the Hindu view of things are persecuted by unfairtax raids, and attempts to stop their Hindu devotional telecasts. They then use the secular news media to spread false claimsof attacks on Christians by fundamentalist Hindus, and to defame popular Vedic saints who make great stridesfor theDharmic cause.Their next step has been to convert movie stars to gain influential voices, and with large amounts of moneybuy the cooperation of politicians. Activities in other parts of India include providing provisions to the poor, as long as they convert to Christianity. Ihave also seen where hospitals provide free medical care, such as for women giving birth to babies, as long as they signpapers that say they convert to Christianity. Or new water wells established in a poor village, but in front of a church wherethe pastor makes sure no non-believers are allowed to draw water. Or large corporations hire people for uppermanagementonly if they are Christian. In these and other ways, the plan is to convert with goods and allurements. Other strategies include that Hindusand tribals are told that the worship of Vedic gods is actually the worship of thedevil or Satan. Also create a fear in them of hell that can only be rectified by accepting Christianity, and tell them that theyremain poor because they have not converted. The newly converted are asked to make other converts, and to destroy Vedictemples to prove their dedication to their newfaith. These are all strategies that often involve trickery and lies that actually goagainst the real teachings of Jesus. In Karnataka,for example, in 2003, as reported by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and in “India Today”, 79 crores($790,000,000) was collected from about two lakh (200,000) temples. From that, temples received 7 crores($70,000,000) for their maintenance, Muslim Madrassas and Haj subsidy (for trip to Mecca) wasgiven 59 crores, and churches about 13crores. Twenty-five percent of the two lakh temples i.e., about 50,000 in Karnataka, will be closed down for lack of resources. In Kerala, funds from the Guruvayur temple are diverted to other government projects denying improvements to 45Hindu temples. Land belonging to the Ayyappa temple (in Sabarimala) has been grabbed andchurch backed encroachesare occupying huge areas of forestland running into thousands of acres near Sabarimala. With a newDevaswom ordinance1800 new temples are taken under government control. In this way, the looting of temple finances and propertiescontinuesunabated. It is said that this state alone has 29,000 Christian missionaries and clergy and 19,000 in Muslim counterpartswhose main preoccupation is conversion of Hindus. Kerala is a precursor for the state of things to come for the Hindu community in India.With 56 percent Hindu population, it hardly controls 25 percent of the economy. In Maharashtra, the government recently declared to take over all the temples. This is a precursor to repeat theprocess already happening in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Kerala. Articles 25 and 26 of the Indian Constitutionguarantees public establishment and maintenance of religious institutions and to administer such property in accordancewith law has been completely ignored toward Hindu foundations. While looting Hindu institutions, the Governmentssubsidizes the “Hajj” pilgrimage for the Muslims to the tune of Rs. 380 crores annually (including subsidy to airlines), andprovides 1000 croresper year for the salary of Imams, and provides funds to churches. It is obvious that the current laws in the country are discriminatory towards Hindu religious institutions and it isimportant that Hindus demand that the government accord Hindu institutions the same status as Muslim and Christianinstitutions. The existence of the Hindu majority of India is being threatened in their own homeland. Selfish politicians arebent on destroying the Vedic Dharma and its culture that goes back thousands of years. Mahatma Gandhi whofought all ofhis life for social justice and religious tolerance called religious conversions by missionaries the deadliest poison that eversapped the years of foreign rule has resulted in loss of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangla Desh, and the cultural loss of Kashmir.Today a half-million Kashmiri pandits are living as refuges in their own mother land for more than a decade and are dying inlarge numbers. There has also been the cultural loss of the four states of northeast India which were a Hindu majority asrecently as 1948. Next in line for losing its traditional culture is Andhra Pradesh. Hindus who are complacent need to understand the consequences if the current situation continues. Missionarieswith the help of leftists and crooked politicians, pseudo-secularists, working in a democracy with a highlycorrupt politicalsystem, a culturally deprived intelligentsia, with billions of dollars and little scruples, have the potential to convert a majorityof India=s population away from the culture of their homeland in just fountain of truth. Readersare requested not to merely stand by and hope that nothing will happen to Hindu Vedic Dharma. Onethousand a few years. This, along with vote bank politics, can result in complete marginalization of Hindusand the division ofIndia. In such a situation, those who do not convert will be at an enormous disadvantage economically and spiritually. Any Hindu or Dharmist who is more concerned with himself, hisfamily and his own personal advancement over andabove his contribution to his society and culture, only decreases the future well-being of them and its traditions, and reduceshis own participation in securing a positive future for them. It is time for all Hindusand supporters of Vedic culture to stand strong for Dharma and to unite and work together to preserveand protect their culture by consolidating their votes to remove those politicians who are not supportive of Vedic Dharma,and to bring in those who are. We must remove all superficial differences among the numerousHindu organizations andrealize that without a unified platform, all forms of discord will be taken advantage of by those who work against us and wishto see the demise of Vedic culture. This must never happen, and we can all work together to prevent it. Now is the time towork together more than ever. How India is Losing It’s Culture democracy in India has been hijacked. It takes a fortune to be elected. Politicians,elected by and for the people, once they are locked in the ivory tower that is Delhi, forget all about the people. What is it that which India is fast losing as you read this article? Its culture. Entire patches in the northeast are beingconverted to Christianity. Missionaries tell tribalsthat it is sinful to enter a temple, women are asked not to wear bindis, andchildren are taught to look down on their culture as animist or heathen. India is fast losing communal harmony.Today, even the Sikh community feels it wants to separate from its Hindubrothers, and Christians and Muslims are encouraged to look down upon Hindus. In the Indian media, there is a witch hunt against gurus, a deriding and mocking of Indian spirituality, a marginalizingof Hinduism and Hindus, who constitute the immense majority in India and are a billion worldwide, one of the most law-abiding, religious, educated, affluent communities in the world. More and more, Indian television particularly, but also newspapers and magazines, are casting a look on India that isnot only very critical (if you open any newspaper nowadays, you can only end up depressed), but which in its very nature is aWestern look — which judges India according to Western standards. India’s intellectuals defend an artist who paints one of the most revered ancient Hindu gods doing unmentionablethings to a Hindu goddess. Someone who is part of a diabolical plot to kill Indian leaders and storm Parliament gets thebenefit of the doubt from the same intelligentsia in the vision particularly, but also newspapers and magazines, are casting alook on India that is not only very critical (if you open any newspaper nowadays, you can only end up depressed), but whichin its very natureis a Western look — which judges India according to Western standards. India’s intellectuals defend an artist who paints one of the most revered ancient Hindu godsdoing unmentionablethings to a Hindu goddess. Someone who is part of a diabolical plot to kill Indian leaders and storm Parliament gets thebenefit of the doubt from the same intelligentsia in the name of judicial correctness. Some Indians are more and moredivided. Instead of feeling first Indians, they feel they are first Muslims and then Indians, first Dalits and then Indians, firstChristian and then Indians. This is a dangerous trend and it spells the death of the minimum unified nationalistic pride thatcan take a countryforward. Instead, Indians today take pride in melting abroad, or adopting a ‘secular’ creed,which basicallymakes them soul-less and identity-less, however brilliantly they ape the West. As a foreigner who loves India, I feel that this blind copying of the West’s ignorant and doubting mind, the aping ofwhatever is has proved wrong in the West – wild consumerism, or savage capitalism – will be a tragedy for India. TheWesternization of India must not be at the cost of her culture and spirituality. Yet, there are signs that it is already happeninghere.