oppn parties A Life Sacrificed to Religious Rituals

News Snippets

  • Trouble brews in Bihar JD(U)-BJP alliance as Bihar police asks special branch officers to keep tabs on RSS activities
  • Trust vote in Karnataka assembly today. With rebel MLAs deciding to stay away after the SC order, the Congress-JD(S) government is likely to fall as it does not have the numbers
  • Amit Shah says the government will identify and deport illegal immigrants from all parts of the country
  • Reports from Pakistan confirm that Hafiz Saeed has been arrested and sent to jail
  • After the SC order, Karnataka Speaker says he will go by the Constitution in deciding on the resignations of the 16 MLAs
  • Rebel MLAs say they will not attend the trust vote on Thursday
  • Supreme Court rules that rebel MLAs cannot be forced to attend the assembly and vote in the floor test
  • Both the Centre and the Assam government have sought re-verification of up to 20% of draft NRC data
  • Pakistan opens its airspace for Indian planes
  • Dilapidated building collapses in Mumbai, killing more than 10 people while many were still trapped
  • Kulbhushan Jadhav case verdict to be delivered today by the ICJ
  • A Vistara flight landed in Lucknow with just 5 to 10 minutes of fuel left in the tank
  • Supreme Court to decide on Karnataka MLAs plea today
  • Karnataka alliance to face floor test on Thursday
  • China says that the next Dalai Lama will be appointed by it
International Court of Justice agrees with India, stays Kulbhushan Jadhav's execution. It asks Pakistan to allow consular access to the accused.
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A Life Sacrificed to Religious Rituals

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
A 13-year old Jain girl in Hyderabad died of cardiac arrest two days after breaking her 68-days long religious fast. It is true that religion is a personal matter and every person is entitled to decide what is good for her or him. But that is applicable for a person who has attained majority. A 13 year old cannot decide what is good for him or her. To subject such a young person to such a torturous fast is a social evil. It also violates several laws. Sadly, this practice of subjecting children to dangerous religious rituals is being followed by adherents of most religions and throughout the world.

The Jains are very religious people and steadfastly follow the rules of the closed knit community. This is good as it makes them lead a disciplined life. But some things should be decided by the community itself to rid it of unwanted tragedies. Allowing children to undertake prolonged fasting is one of these. The community should prohibit anyone below 18 years of age from conducting any strenuous religious ritual. Apart form causing health risks to children, the fasting also causes mental trauma and interferes with their studies. A child should not be made to ape adults.

The Gods are not appeased if the elders of the family do not care for the children and allow them to undertake such life threatening fasts. This girl had fasted to bring good luck to the family. That obviously means that the family acquiesced in her decision. It was wrong on part of the family to do so. Some families take pride in putting their children at risk in performing such religious rituals. No religious texts allow children to do so. The Jain dharma gurus should take the lead in creating aw+areness and prohibiting such evil practices.