Ahimsa Times July 2006 Issue www.jainsamaj.org
"I object to violence because when it appears to do good,
the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent."
-- Mohandas K. Gandhi --
MUMBAI TRAIN BOMB BLASTS
Ahimsa Foundation expresses deep condolences at the loss of hundreds of lives of innocents persons in Mumbai train bomb blasts. We condemn all organizations and individuals who were responsible for this dastardly and barbaric act of violence. Issue can not be resolved by mindless killings of unconcerned and innocent men, women and children and damage public property. It may be difficult to locate and punish the real elements behind these acts of terrorism, but we are sure, very soon they will realize, what they have done and what they should not have done.
We request all religious organizations irrespective of the faith they represent and promote, to come forward and work for communal harmony and world peace wherever they are. We request all persons who are involved in bloodshed to rethink and value human life. They may have some issue or other, which needs to be addressed and resolved but for this they must show patience, understanding and communicate positively and also appreciate others point of views. Hostilities can draw attention to problems but cannot solve. We also request all the world's political and religious leaders to keep politics out of human issues. They should do everything possible to resolve the subject as early as possible in the interest of humanity.
UK communities CONDEMN MUMBAI BLASTS
Bomb blasts on seven trains killed nearly 180 people in Mumbai. Four days later, in a corner of the English countryside, hundreds of British Indians gathered in prayer at a memorial service. Europe's biggest Hindu Temple, Bhaktivedanta Manor, on the outskirts of Watford, invited members of eight faiths - Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Islam, Jain, Judaism, Sikhism and Zoroastrian - to condemn the atrocity on Mumbai's transport system. While worshippers prayed to their different gods, all their thoughts were 5,000 miles away with the survivors and families of those who died in the bomb attacks. Just as the priests of London's St Paul's Cathedral lit candles to mark each of the 7 July bombs, seven candles were lit by faith leaders in Watford to represent each bomb in Mumbai. Candles were also lit by four young girls, to represent the "four corners" of India. Later, there was a prayer for world peace: "Let our differences enrich our lives and of those around us, let our similarities be the cause of great joy and celebration. "In these difficult times, may we stand together." Gauri Das, spiritual commissioner of the Hindu Forum of Britain, said: "The clothes may be different, but the message of God is the same." Leaders of the communities speaking on the occasion said that the bombings in Mumbai "indiscriminate, cold-blooded murder, it doesn't matter what background they come from, these people are committing mass murders". Ramesh Kallidai, secretary general of the Hindu Forum of Britain, said they had organised the service because they felt it was important for all faith communities to come together and pray. "By coming together we are sending them a very strong message, that we won't be divided". Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Tarique Ghaffur, the most senior Asian police officer in the UK - and a Muslim - said it was important to keep communities together in the face of such atrocities. Source:
JAINA CONDEMNS TERROR ATTACK IN MUMBAI
Washington - July 11, 2006 -- The JAINA Public Affairs Council Chairman, Dr. Sushil Jain today condemned the terrorist attack committed allegedly by Kashmiri extremists. This act caused Mumbai authorities to heighten securities and shut down trains and other public transportation in nearly all-major cities. A series of eight explosive devices went off on commuter trains in and around Mumbai, India killing nearly 185 and injuring over 700 people. These seemingly copycat terrorist acts follow the London and Madrid bombings of trains and subway stations killing and injuring several hundred people. The JAINA (The Federation of Jain Associations in North America) Public Affairs Council (PAC) condemns the repeated terrorist aggression in Mumbai and other locations in India.
"We at JAINA extend our heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and the Indian people. As Americans, we are familiar with the imminent and long-term repercussions of terrorism" Said President Mr. Kirit Daftari & PAC Chairman Dr. Sushil Jain. Indian officials have not yet determined who the perpetrators are, but initial investigation points to Kashmiri extremists to be responsible for today's blasts. These attacks prompt JAINA PAC to urge the Indian American community to continue to maintain vigilance and protect the security of our places of worship, our communities and our nation. JAINA PAC continues to collaborate with American and Indian American institutions to carry out the National Grassroots Campaign to Fight Terrorism and urges the Indian people to sustain their domestic counter terrorism efforts as well. Those responsible for these brutal immoral attacks should be swiftly brought to justice.
As a representative of mainstream Indian Americans, JAINA PAC reminds the international community during this sensitive time that Jainism, a strong supporter of non-Violence, does not tolerate the use of terrorism for any purpose, regardless of which the aggressors are and what their justifications might be. It is a time for solidarity, not division, not only for the people of Mumbai alone but for India and for the American people, regardless of race or faith, to fight against the evil of terrorism. Courtesy: Mr. Nitin G. Talsania, JAINA, 22 Green Mountain Drive, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920, Phone #:
908-419-7340, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, personal: email@example.com
BHAGWAN MAHAVEER STATUE PLACED AT VISHNU TEMPLE MUSEUM, TORONTO - Toronto based Indian community commissioned a marble statue of Bhagwan Mahaveer in Richmond Hill Vishnu Temple museum. The statue was installed in the presence of hundreds of persons representing different religious faith from India & Canada. The ceremony was conducted by Mr. Naresh Jain & Mrs. Manju Jain. The distinguished guest list included Sri Dharam Chand Shashtri from India. Consul General to Cananda Shri Satish Mehta, Bhattarak Shri Devendra Kirtiji. Toronto museum has on display hundred of precious and rare exhibits and artifacts about Hindu culture and religion. The museum is spread over more than 17000 square feet area on the third floor of the temple. The temple is located at Yonge Street, Highway 407. Source: Toronto Star, Daily News Paper, July 3, 2006.
BHAGWAN ADINATH'S LARGEST STATUE TO BE PLACED ON JAIPUR DELHI HIGHWAY
Manav Shanti Pratisthan a voluntary non-profitable organization promoted by Pratishthacharya Shri Dharam Chand Shastri is working on various projects for community development. This also includes installation of tallest (27 feet) sitting statue of Bhagwan Adinath at its campus on Delhi-Jaipur Highway (Asthapad Jain Tirth, Bilaspur Chowk, Near Toll Tax, National Highway No. 8, Gurgaon Haryana). Craftsmen are giving finishing touches to the stone statue before lifting for the final placement. The place will be known as Ashtapad and the pratishtha ceremony will take place in early 2007. The huge statue will be placed on 50 feet high platform. Manav Shanti Pratisthan invites all community members to visit Ashtapad and attend pratishtha program. Readers may contact Shri Shastri on telephone number 93-128-37240 or 0124-3209242.
PANCH-KALYANAK PERFORMED AT TORONTO JAIN TEMPLE
Pratishthacharya Shri Dharam Chand Shastri performed Panchkalyanak of Bhagwan Adinath statue at Toronto from June 20th to June 26th, 2006. The Jain temple located at Park Lane Road, Toronto was visited by hundreds of Jains from all over the United States and Canada. Programs were also attended by Bhattarak Ji Shri Devendra Kirti. The prominent Jains who participated in pratishtha program included Mr. Naresh Jain, Mr. Satendra Jain, Mr. Om Prakash Jain, Mr. Gyan Chand Jain and Mr. Ravindra Patil. Shastri Ji delivered regular pravachans on the occasion.
LAKHS LOOTED FROM JAIN TEMPLE AT CHENNAI
Chennai, June 18, A group of unidentified men struck at a popular Jain temple in Elephant Gate and walked away with over Rs. seven lakh in the hundis. The religious place is located at Elephant Gate, a thickly populated and business area in North Chennai. The Jains, who constitute a major cross-section of the population in the locality, are aghast and anguished that a temple could be targeted by thieves. The police have now formed a special team to nab the criminals. The temple, Chandraprabhu Jain Juna Mandir on the Mint Street, is 90-year old. It is a very popular temple among Jains The temple has three floors. The ground floor houses the office and the rooms of the employees. In the first and second floors are the sanctum sanctorum and the abode of the priests. On the second floor there are six wooden hundis and one more with covered with a silver sheet. Large number of Jain pilgrims drop bundles of currency and jewellery into the hundis. The hundis were last opened and the contents emptied four months ago. Hence it is said that the stolen amount might run into several lakhs. When employees came to clean the temple in morning they found on the second floor hundi broken open and coins scattered around. The temple authorities were informed immediatley, who in turn rung in the police. The police arrived with fingerprint experts and they have set up a special team to nab the hundi breakers. Courtesy: Pankaz chandmal Hingarh Moderator of JFW egroup and Secretary of JFW association.
ACHARYA NITYANAND JI TO BE DECLARED AS "RASHTRA SANT"
Gachhadhipati Acharya Shri Nityanand Surishwar Ji maharaj is going to be honoured by the title, 'Rashtra sant' (national saint) during his chaturmas period at Bali town in Pali district of Rajasthan. The decision was taken at a congregation of 601 Jain Shwetambar murtipujak sangh held recently at Ajmer. The acharya belongs to "Guru Vallabh Suri Paat Parampara". He has given a new direction to Jain sects and Jain community as a whole by virtue of his rare ability and extra-ordinary genius. He has been instrumental in organising various gachha (sub-sects) amongst Murti-pujak sect, inspiring devotees so as to mobilise immense resources for religious, educational, medical and social activities. He has been a popular author of several books on Jainism, particularly a series of children's books with pictures describing stories from Jain literature.
CHATURMAS OF EMINENT SAINTS AND SADHWI (CONTINUED FROM PREVIOUS ISSUES)
1. Acharya Shri Vidhya Sagar Ji Maharaj: Amarkantak (M.P.)
2. Acharya Shri Chandra Sagar Ji Maharaj: Jaingiri, Jatwada (M.P.)
3. Acharya Shri Padam nandi Ji Maharaj: Melchittamur, Jinje Taluka, Dist.: Vellipuram (T.N.)
4. Acharya Shri Virag sagar Ji Maharaj: Rohini, New Delhi.
5. Acharya Shri Shiv sagar Ji Maharaj: Mandsaur (M.P.)
6. Muni Shri Saurabh Sagar Ji Maharaj, Muni Shri Prabal Sagar Ji Maharaj: Rewari (Haryana)
7.Muni Shri Pulak Sagar Ji Maharaj: Gulaladi, Mumbai.
8. Muni Shri Vimarsh Sagar Ji Maharaj: Kota.
9. Muni Shri Pramukha Sagar Ji maharaj: Hyderabad
Shwetambar Sthanakwasi Sect:
1. Acharya Dr. Shiv Muni, Head of Swetmbar Jain Sthakwasi sect: Jammu
2. Pravartak Shri Roop Chnad Ji Maharaj (Rajat): Beawar (Rajasthan)
3. Pandit Shri Udai Muni Ji Maharaj, Dhiraj Muni Ji Maharaj (Sheetal Gachha): Kamla Nagar, Delhi.
4. Shri Manibhadra Muni Ji, Shri Achal Muni Ji and Shri Puneet Muni Ji maharaj: Pokhra,
5. Punjab Pravartini Shri Kesar Devi Ji maharaj, Shri Kaushalya Ji Maharaj and others: Faridkot (Punjab)
6. Mahasati Shri Saubhagya Kunwar Ji, Shri Nirmal Kunwar Ji Mahara and others: Gandhi Nagar,
7. Mahasati Shri Priyadarshana Ji maharaj wih 3 other sadhwi: Hyderabad.
Shwetambar Murtipujak Sect
1. Acharya Shri Rajendra Suri Ji Maharaj with 17 other saints and sadhwi: Gaudi Ji Upasraya, Payudhuni, Mumbai.
2. Acharya Shri Jinittam Surishwar Ji maharaj with 16 other other saits: Mysore.
3. Acharya Shrimad Vijay Hemendra Surishwar Ji maharaj: Mohankheda Teerth
4. Acharya Shri mad Vijay Jayantsen Surishwar Ji maharaj: Mohankheda Teerh.
5. Acharya Ratna Shri Gun Ratna Surishwar Ji maharaj: Surendra Nagar (Gujarat)
7. Upadhyay Maniprabh Sagar Ji maharaj alongwith a group of 90 saints: Pune city
8. Shri Jayant Vijay Ji Maharaj: Bhandavpur Teerth (M.S.)
9. Shri Padam Sagar Ji Maharaj: Palitana (Guj.)
10. Shri Labdhi Chandra Sagar Ji Maharaj: Jamnagar (Guj.)
ALL INDIA SUMMER SCHOOL ON PRAKRIT AT B. L. INSTITUTE of INDOLOGY DELHI
Valedictory Function of 18th, three week All India Summer School on Prakrit language, literature & manuscriptology was held at Bhogilal Leherchand Institute of Indology, Delhi, on 11th June 2006. There were about 49 students for the primary as well as advance courses from the Universities and Institutions all over India. The eminent scholars of India gave a very condensed and extensive course to them on Prakrit Language, Literature and Manuscriptology. Prof. Vachaspati Upadhyaya, V.C. of Lal Bahadur Shastri Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeeth was the Chief Guest and Shri Champak Chatterji, Secretary, Ministry of HRD, New Delhi and Prof. Alexander Von Rospatt of University of California were the Guests of Honour. After formal beginning of the function with invocation, the Vice-Chairman of BLII, Shri N. P. Jain introduced and welcomed the distinguished guests while Shri Raj Kumar Jain; Secretary General of Vijay Vallabh Smarak, gave introduction about the activities of the Smarak. The Officiating Director of BLII, Dr. Balaji Ganorkar spoke about the Institute, Summer School and the future plans. He made formal declaration of the formation of Alumni Association of the students of Prakrit Summer School.
AKSHYA TRITIYA MAHOTSAVA AT JVB ORLANDO
July 2006, The Jain Vishwa Bharati Orlando Florida celebrated the Akshay Tritiya Varshik Mahotsav and anniversary of the center in the presence of Adarniya Samani Bhavit Pragyaji and Samani Amit Pragyaji. Panditji Jayshbhai Khona from Milpitas California graciously performed all the poojas. The highlight of these two days were Varshitap parana of Smt. Sharmilaben Mehta and Varshitap Beyasna Parana of Smt. Harshaben Nagada. Both the Tapasvis had attham during the event and had good sata. For details, visit:
EDUCATIONAL BOOKS DISTRIBUTION AT YJA CONVENTION
YJA convention committee has approved the following books to be given to it’s about 800 Young Jains attending the convention in July 2006 at Stamford CT.
1. Jainism – Religion of Compassion and Ecology
2. The Book of Compassion (Collection of Articles)
3. English Pratikraman of JSCNC
4. Essence of World Religions
The pdf file of all books can be seen at:
www.jaina.org. Jaina Education committee will organize the required funding for the project through sponsors. The sponsors will be recognized by YJA as well as by Jaina Education Committee in its donor list and will publish them periodically in the educational activity report. Jainism follows the path of Jnan or knowledge to attain liberation. Please contribute generously towards for this noble cause. The contributions can be mailed at: Federation of Jaina – Education Committee, 509 Carriage Woods Circle, Raleigh NC 27607. Please send your commitment e-mail with name and address to firstname.lastname@example.org. or call Pravin K. Shah
919 889 1900 Cel.
INTERNATIONAL SUMMER SCHOOL FOR JAIN STUDIES
The second batch of the International Summer school for Jain studies which commenced on the 1st June will conclude on the 30th July, 2006 at New Delhi. As informed in the previous issues, this batch consists of 14 scholars, drawn from USA, Canada, Singapore and Thailand. (4 Professors and 10 M.A. and Ph.D students), 7 from USA, 4 from Canada, 2 from Thailand and 1 from Singapore, representing 13 universities (7 in USA, 3 in Canada, 2 in Thailand and 1 in Singapore). In just one year, the number of scholars has doubled and the participation is truly international. The participants were taken on study trips to Delhi, Jaipur, Ladnun, Ahmedabad, Pune, Sravanbelgola, Aligarh and Delhi, besides attending intensive classes on various aspects of Jainism at New Delhi for the first two weeks. Dr. L. M. Singhvi will deliver the valedictory address and distribute the certificates to the participants. The entire programme is being organised by a committee, consisting of Dr. Sulekh C. Jain (USA), Prof. Cromwell Crawford (Univ. of Hawaii) and Sri Shugan Jain (India).
DR. JAI KUMAR 'JALAJ" NOMINATED FOR AKSHAR ADITYA AWARD
Madhya Pradesh Writers Federation has nominated Dr. Jai Kumar Jalaj for Akshar Aditya Award, which includes cash prize of two lakhs and a memento. Dr. Jalaj is also the author of "Bhagwan Mahaveer Ka Buniyadi Chintan" (Hindi). The English translation of this book is titled "The Basic Thoughts of Bhagwan Mahaveer". In four years thirteen editions of Hindi version and five editions of English version have been printed and sold. Dr. Jalaj can be contacted at 30, Indira Nagar, Ratlan - 457001, Madhya Pradesh, Tel. 07412-404208 or 9425929111.
AWARDS AND HONOUR
1. Sewa Ratna award to Shri Duli Chand Jain
Shri Duli Chand Jain, Chairman, Karuna International, Chennai, who is a highly devoted scholar and writer of books and articles on Jainism was honoured recently in Chennai with "SEWA RATNA" award by Centenarian Trust there. Shri Jain is a founder of Karuna Clubs and Karuna International, branches and centres of which have been established in all parts of the country in order to develop a feeling of compassion, ethics, ahimsa, brethrenship and respect for each other amongst the children and grown-up students. The award was handed over at a simple ceremony by Dr. A. Padmanabhan, former Governor of Mizoram and the programme was presided over by Justice S. Jagdeesan, Chairman, Intellectual Property Appelate Board.
2. Jain Ratna Award to Shri Hasti Mal Mohnot
Shri Hasti Mal Mohnot, a vetaran and highly respected social figure and ardent devotee was honoured with Jain Ratna Award for his immense contribution to Jain religion and Jain society. He has been carrying "Varshi-tap" (fasting for the whole year) for the last 35 years.
3. Bharat Gaurav Samman to Shri Nemi Chand Chopra
Shri Nemi Chand Chopra from Paki, Rajasthan, past Chairman of All India Sthanakwasi Jain Conference, has been honoured by Asian Astrology Congress (India) with 'Bharat Gaurav Samman' at its annual convention held recently at Hardwar for his social, educational and intellectual services.
4. Lok Mitra Puraskar to Shri Vijay Mal Saand
Shri Vijay Mal Saand from Mumbai was honoured with 'Lok Mitra Puraskar' for his contribution to the cause of spreading education and for his social service in villages by the Golden India Foundation, Jaipur.
5. Dr. Nemi Chand Jain Memorial Award to Dr. Kalyan Mal Gangwal and Dr. Kusum Lunia
Under the auspices of Bhagwan Mahavir Foundation, Chennai, this award was given for the year 2006 to Dr. Kalyan Mal Gangwal (Pune) for his book, "Vegetarianism-Healthy way of life" in English language and to Dr. Kusum Lunia (Ghaziabad) for her book, "Shakahar-Shreshtra Ahar" (Vegetarian diet-Excellent food) in Hindi. Each of them were honoured with a citation and cash award of Rs. 51,000/-.
JAINA STUDIES: THEIR PRESENT STATE AND FUTURE TASKS,
By Professor Dr Ludwig Alsdorf, 220 x 145 mm 144 pp. In 1962, Professor Dr Ludwig Alsdorf gave two lectures in Paris, on the current state of Jain studies and future tasks. Those lectures are "as relevant as ever and ought to be read by anyone who wants to work in the field of Prakrit". The lectures were translated into English by Bal Patil, at the request of Professor Dr A N Upadhye and have been revised and edited by Professor Dr Willem Bollée, son in law of Professor Alsdorf. They have been presented in the form of the present book. The book deals with a brief history of Jaina Studies in the West; a history of the Jaina religion itself, a scholarly comparison with Buddhism, pointing out the strong Jaina influence on Buddhism giving examples of words like "asava", "tai". Alsdorf points out that even for a purely linguistic understanding of Buddhist texts, a study of Jaina scriptures is essential. Courtesy: Manish Modi, Hindi Granth Karyalaya, 9 Hirabaug, C.P. Tank, Mumbai 400004.
ATTHAPAHUDA (Prakrit-Hindi), By Acharya Kundakunda, Pandit Nathuram Premi Research Series Volume 6, Hindi translation by Dr Jaykumar Jalaj,Edited by Manish Modi, 215 x 135 mm 144 pp, Softcover Rs. 100 . Acharya Kundakunda is probably the most influential Digambara Acarya of the Common Era. His works, "Samayasara", "Pañcastikayasara", "Pravacanasara" and "Niyamasara" along with his "Atthapahuda", "Rayanasara" and "Barasanuvekkha" have had a deep and lasting impact on Jainism. Written primarily with the ascetic in mind, Kundakunda's works have served as inspiration and true guidance to anyone who is interested in attaining the heights of spiritual progress. He was a Digambar monk, also known also as:
For Digambaras, his name has auspicious significance and occupies third place after Bhagavan Mahavira and Gautama Ganadhara in the sacred litany. Kundakunda wrote in Shauraseni Prakrit. His teachings are lucid and precise. Kundakunda's "Atthapahuda" (Eight Discourses) represents his teachings in a nutshell. In this work, he discusses various aspects related to the Jain Doctrine and to practical life. In brief gathas, the Acharya has managed to convey the entirety of the Jina's teachings. This work is the key to understanding rational perception, attaining rational knowledge and practising rational conduct in life. This Hindi translation by Dr. Jaykumar Jalaj is precise as well as reader-friendly. Complex ideas and metaphysical concepts are explained in exceedingly simple yet attractive language. It is likely that this translation will be seen as a classic translation of Kundakunda into Hindi. Book available at Hindi Granth Karyalaya, 9 Hirabaug, C.P. Tank, Mumbai 400004. E-mail: email@example.com, Web: www.hindibooks.8m.com
NEW DELHI HOSPITAL CARES FOR INJURED BIRDS
In the honking chaos of Delhi's old city, surrounded by bustling streets and crowded alleys teeming with people, hand-pulled carts and motorized rickshaws spewing exhaust, sits a little haven where sparrows chirp, pigeons coo and peacocks scream. For bird lovers across northern India, the terra-cotta colored Charity Bird Hospital in the yard of the 16th century Digamber Jain temple has become a sanctuary for ailing birds and small animals. Anyone finding an injured bird can bring it to the hospital and it will be nursed back to health. All treatment provided by the team of veterinarians and volunteers - including surgery - is free. And once the birds recover, they are set free. There's also a call-in service that dispenses free advice to owners of ailing birds. At any given time about 2,500 birds are being treated at the hospital. In existence since 1929, the hospital runs on thousands of such donations, mostly made by followers of Jainism, a religion that calls for a deeply spiritual deference to all living beings. Donations are also sent by Hindus, Muslims, Christians. Bird injuries occur all year round. In summer, birds collapse in northern India's searing heat, and many fly into electric poles or vehicles. In winter, it's the dense smog that leads to birds getting injured.
Injured birds are treated and placed in individual cages. When they get slightly better, the birds are moved into a larger cage with other convalescing birds. Since the hospital is guided by the Jain philosophy of not harming even the smallest living creature, the birds, even carnivorous ones, are fed a vegetarian diet of green vegetables, nuts, grains and cereals. The only hesitation that bird owners have in bringing their pets to the hospital is that once cured the birds are not returned to them, but are set free. Smaller birds such as finches, sparrows, pigeons and parrots are released from the roof of the hospital. Larger birds like peacocks and eagles are released in forests along the nearby River Yamuna. The bird hospital is managed by veterinary surgeon Dr. Vijay Kumar Singh.
AJIT JAIN MAY SUCCEED WARREN BUFFETT?
Warren Buffett’s pledge to donate shares worth to $37 billion to a charities run by Bill Gates has renewed speculation about who will succeed Buffett as head of Berkshire Hathaway when he retires. In March, Buffett said the company’s board of directors had settled on three potential successors. Many feel that Ajit Jain is one of the three, and perhaps the leading candidate. Jain came to Berkshire Hathaway’s reinsurance business with little experience in the field but lots of confidence. By all accounts that seems to have worked out well for him. The business he runs for Berkshire Hathaway has amassed an averaged of $1.7 billion a year since 1998. Ajit
Jain is also suppose to be very close to Buffett personally.
MINISTER MR. ANTULAY ASSURES MINORITY STATUS FOR JAINISM
Chennai, July 4, 2006, Assuring that steps would be taken to fulfill the long standing demand of Jain community for minority religious status, Union Minister for Minority Affairs AR Antulay said that awareness should be created among the people before according the status. Antulay, participating in a meeting in Chennai, said he would look into the memorandum given to him by people belonging to Jain community. He said there were some people who claimed that Jainism was part of Hinduism, though it was a different religion. Reacting to a demand that linguistic minorities should be separated from religious minorities, he said the two categories should not be separated. Hindus were minorities in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and North Eastern states and everyone who was a minority should be given equal treatment. Linguistic and religious minorities put together, comprise 33 per cent of the population. "Minorities play a decisive role in India and can shift the balance of power.
RAJASTHAN PASSES ANTI-CONVERSION BILL WHICH CAN BE USED AGAINST JAINS
JAIPUR: The Rajasthan Assembly has passed an Anti-conversion Bill, even as the entire Opposition stayed away. There were uproarious scenes throughout the two-and-a-half hour-long discussion on the legislation. The "Rajasthan Dharma Swatantrata Bill, 2006" (Religious Freedom Bill) has a provision for re-conversion to Hinduism. Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje was not present when her party members battled with the Opposition over the bill. It was taken up on the concluding day of the budget session and passed with a voice-vote. The Congress and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) continued their boycott of the proceedings for the rest of the day, though the BJP made attempts to bring them back after the bill was passed. Home Minister Gulab Chand Kataria, who piloted the Bill, said the Bill was necessary to check the activities of Christian missionaries in some parts of the State, especially in Kota. He, however, pointed out that the Bill was not against any religion.
"All religions will be treated equally when it comes to conversions. If anyone wants to change his religion on his own he can still do it," he said. Similar Bills, introduced in States such as Madhya Pradesh and Orissa had the Supreme Court's approval, he noted. The Congress members and Amra Ram (CPI-M) termed the Bill an attack on the freedom of speech and expression, freedom of conscience and freedom to profess, practice and propagate religion, enshrined in the Constitution. The Opposition attempts to get the Bill referred to a Select Committee were in vain. "The Bill is an attempt to suppress the minorities. It can be used against Sikhs, Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, Jains and others," Zuber Khan, Chief Whip of the Congress, said. He challenged the Government to give a single instance of forcible conversion in Rajasthan during its rule. "Congress members Sanyam Lodha and Mohammed Mahir Azad said there were ample chances of misuse of the legislation. Mr. Lodha pointed out that the Bill had kept the same kind of punishment for converting as well as attempt to convert. The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party members, tried to take maximum political advantage of the enactment of the Bill, trying to project the main Opposition party, the Congress, as "anti-Hindu." Education Minister Ghanshyam Tiwari said at least on two occasions: "The Congress party is acting against the interests of Hindus under the leadership of B.D. Kalla."
CALL FOR 2006 PRABHA DUTT FELLOWSHIPS FOR WOMEN JOURNALISTS
The Sanskriti Pratishthan, New Delhi is inviting applications for its annual Prabha Dutt Fellowship in Journalism from young women who wish to investigate and research on any topic of contemporary relevance. The Prabha Dutt Foundation initially administered the Fellowship. The scheme will now be managed by the Sanskriti Pratishthan, which has been giving similar awards for cultural, media and social activism over the past 25 years.
The Fellowship has been instituted to honour and perpetuate the memory of Prabha Dutt a bright and promising fearless journalist. It will be given to young, mid - career woman journalist for in-depth research and investigative stories. The purpose of the Fellowship is to encourage young mid career women journalists to develop their potential by pursuing meaningful projects without having to work under the pressures of short deadlines. The Fellowship carries a grant of Rs. 60,000 including travel expenses. The work can be executed in Hindi, English or any Regional Language. The Fellowship is only open to women who are Indian Nationals in the age group of 25 to 40. It is exclusively for print journalists. Candidates may send a two-page CV and a write-up of about 250-300 words explaining their project. The application should bear the title 'Sanskriti - Prabha Dutt Fellowship' on the envelope when sent by post. The Last date: August 31, 2006. Sanskriti Pratishthan, C - 11 Qutab Institutitonal Area, New Delhi - 110016 Website: www.sanskritifoundation.org
REQUEST FOR SCHOLARSHIP
I am Saurabh Sirohia (Jain) belongs to Bikaner and I am doing post graduate diploma in health management from "Institute of Health Management and Research" Jaipur. One of the best sectorial management institute of nation. fees for this two year diploma programme is 2,16,000 excluding boarding and lodging charges. I am seeking financial assistance from your organization. Telephone : 0151-2529233, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
NOW, A WALL CLOCK FOR JAIN MONKS
After the successful marketing of what has now come to be known as 'Jain food' specifically designed for the Jain community, comes a wall clock targeted at the community's monks (sadhus). Jain Monks do not use electricity in the night. Consequently, electric lights are not used in Jain temples and 'upashrayas'. Targetting this segment as well as senior citizens among others, the 73-year-old Mumbai-based Kothari Watch Company, has launched a range of Night Glow Quartz Aall Clocks, which, it claims is a first in the country and will prove very useful to both the target segments. Kothari Night Glow clocks are positioned in such a way that they provide an ideal solution for consumers who prefer to use clocks during night time. Kothari has introduced four models and five colours in full night glow clocks. The price ranges between Rs. 400 and Rs. 480. In addition, the company has also introduced mechanical pocket watches and alarm time pieces in full swing night glow variety. Kothari is also planning to introduce wrist watches in full night glow range.
BJP (JAMMU) PRESIDENT DEMANDS REMOVAL OF DIVISIONAL COMMISSIONER PRAMODH JAIN -Jammu, July 18: Bhartiya Janta Party state president, Dr. Nirmal Singh demanded that Divisional Commissioner of Jammu, Pramodh Jain should be removed from his chair for issuing instructions that no Buda Amarnath Yatri should chant ‘Bharat Mata Ki Ja (Long live mother India).’ “We condemn the statement of Div Com who reportedly in a meeting at Poonch has urged upon Yatris not to recite Bharat Mata Ki Jai during Buda Amarnath Yatra in Poonch”. Addressing the media persons at BJP state headquarter, Dr Nirmal Singh said that efforts are being made by the government to divide the Jammu and Kashmir state and the statement of Div Com Jammu is part of that conspiracy. “Since UPA government has taken over the charge of the country, efforts are being made to divide the state. We condemn their act and the statement of Div Com”.
MOTHER, DAUGHTER RESCUED FROM JAIN FAMILY
Satna, Madhya Pradesh, July 10th 2006, Neither morality nor mercy. If there is anything then it is money and land or property. A hair-raising incident has taken place in the Chandni Talkies area here where a Jain family locked an aged woman with her daughter inside a room and completely sealed it with cement wall. Both the women were set free with police intervention. In this connection a case has been registered against four persons. One of the accused has been arrested. Police personnel on reaching the spot found the mother and her daughter sealed in the third floor of the building. The police immediately swung into action and brought the two down. The mother and her daughter were then taken for medical examination. On the basis of their rescue, a case was registered against Gulab Chand Jain, Sandhya Jain, Shubham alias Rinku and Prasunna Jain under Sections 342,294 and 506 of the IPC. Prasunna Jain has been arrested.
VETERAN JOURNALIST G C JAIN PASSES AWAY
Veteran journalist and Yash Bharti awardee Gyan Chand Jain died at his residence on 18th July at Lucknow following brief illness. Jain (89), who had been associated with different newspapers in a career spanning about 50 years, had also carved a niche for himself in the field of Hindi literature. He was awarded Hindi Patrakar Shiromani title by the U P Press Club and Patrakarita Bhushan by U P Hindi Sansthan besides being honoured with Yash Bharti award by the Uttar Pradesh government this year. Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav has expressed profound grief over the death of Jain and sent his condolences to the bereaved family.
|AHIMSA TIMES INVITES NEWS CORRESPONDENTS FOR HELPING IN NEWS COLLECTION
We invite Jain volunteers from different geographical area to join the team of Ahimsa Times Correspondents. The interested readers may send their profile and a photograph to The Editor at E-Mail: email@example.com.