Lucknow, Jan 31 (IANS): Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Swami Prasad Maurya, who is in the eye of the storm for demanding removal of verses from the Ramcharitmanas which are "disrespectful to Dalits, tribals, backwards and women", is getting support from an unexpected quarter.
Former DGP of Uttar Pradesh Sulkhan Singh has come out in support of Maurya.
In a social media post in Hindi, the retired IPS officer has said that aggressive reactions on Maurya's demand were uncalled for and added that "contaminated and inhumane religious texts need to be criticized".
"One should condemn the Hindu sacred books and scriptures that pollute people's mindset and are inhumane. Hindu sacred books have deeply affected Indian society. In these sacred texts, caste superiority and untouchability have been described as divine. Nobody should claim to have a monopoly over sacred texts," he said.
He further wrote, "Some over enthusiastic upper caste Hindus use abusive language and launch attacks to suppress people from lower communities because they do not want the centuries old exploited community to oppose the social setup and term the dissent as anti-religion."
He said it was necessary for Hindu unity that people should be allowed to protest because sacred texts belonged to all. "The exploited community wants to live in Hindu society and that is why it opposes this, otherwise they would have converted to Islam or Christianity. In the past, conversions took place due to this mindset," he added.
"Maurya has not insulted the text. He has objected to some of its verses and he has the right to do so. No caste or community holds a monopoly on the text. Both Ram and Krishna are our ancestors and we follow them. We also have the right to question them. This is the right parameter of a normal society," he said.
"I condemn attacks and abusive language in the interest of the unity of Hindu society and humanity," he added.
"I recite the Ramcharitmanas and the Bhagavad Gita and follow the doctrines/ preachings mentioned in it but I do not oppose anyone who speaks against these texts. I clear their doubts and also improve my understanding of such topics," Singh said.
Singh served as the Uttar Pradesh DGP from April 24, 2017 to December 31, 2017. After retirement, he was appointed as an advisor on police and prison reforms.