Vaishnavite spiritual leader Tridandi Chinna Srimannarayana Ramanuja Jeeyar Swami today expressed his anguish over the recent desecration of an idol of Lord Kodanda Rama
at the Ramateertham temple in Vizianagaram district's Nellimarla, in Andhra Pradesh.
Talking about the incident at a press conference in Vijaya Keeladri in Tadepally, he lashed out at the state administration, claiming that it had failed to provide any protection to the temples of the state.
"It is disheartening to see that no concrete steps have been taken to safeguard the temples. No CC cameras have been installed in any of the temple complexes despite the rise in the number of vandalism incidents," the seer said.
He added that the restraining influence of the rule of law had completely disappeared from the state, leaving the anti-social elements of society emboldened to do whatever they pleased.
Addressing the government, the Tridandi said that while there was no point in linking politics to religion, it was important to take steps to prevent anti-social activities, and to reassure the Hindu community in the state that its interests would be protected.
"Around 50 such attacks have been recorded so far. The government must take steps to ensure that these do not continue. The first step to do that is to form a committee to look into the matter," he said.
The seer added, "There would have been a huge hue and cry had a church or a mosque been attacked in a similar fashion. We should treat the issue of the rising number of temple attacks with the same seriousness. All religious buildings should be treated with reverence."
He then announced that he would be going on a state-wide yatra from January 17, and would visit all the temples that had recently been vandalised.
"During my yatra, I will speak with the people of the state to come up with a proper system for maintaining the temples. Since the desecration of temples has become such a common occurrence, I will also ponder over how best to protect the temples from such attacks, and how to altogether prevent similar incidents in the future," the religious leader said.