A Congress MLC in Jammu and Kashmir today withdrew his resolution seeking twice-a-day ‘rest’ for the goddess at the revered Mata Vaishno Devi shrine, after the government said it was a matter of religion and interfering in it was beyond the scope of the House.
Congress MLC Jugal Kishore Sharma had tabled a resolution in the House seeking adoption of a system of providing “rest to the goddess twice” in accordance with the Hindu shastras, as is the practice in Bawe Wali Mata Temple, Raghunath Temple, Nauv Devi in Himachal Pradesh, Tirupathi Balaji, Shri Kedarnath Temple, and other temples of the country.
Sharma said the House could make a suggestion to the Board or constitute a House committee which visits the shrine to see how crowded the place is and why the goddess should require some “rest” for some time.
He claimed the Board was not following the shastras (prescribed rules) as the deity has to take rest and has to sleep for some time.
The government has opposed the resolution, saying it was purely a matter of religion and faith and as such would not be appropriate to debate or discuss in the legislature.
Any attempt to interfere with established tradition shall be beyond the scope of the House, Minister of State for Tourism Priya Sethi said.
Surinder Choudhary of PDP also objected to the resolution, saying when a god goes to sleep and when should the deity be asked to get up is a decision that he should not take.
Why does he (Sharma) not go to some Mutt or a Shankacharya and get it solved, Choudhary said.
He said there is such a huge rush of pilgrims from all over the world at the temple shrine that if it is closed for an hour, it will create a mess.
BJP MLC Surinder Mohan Ambardar suggested Sharma to consult some competent person to throw light on the issue first.
Sethi said the decision should be left to saints and competent religious persons as no document is available which could suggest that the goddess needs rest.
She also read an explanation that the government had sought from an expert on the issue.
It is intimated that the ritual and tradition of ‘darshans’ of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine around the clock has been in practice since time immemorial and there has been no instance or document available indicating providing rest to the deity during noon and shayan in the night hours, she said.
The minister said a detailed note strictly based on religious texts and facts on this issue has been furnished by the expert.