Kota defends special pooja for rain

Muzrai Minister Kota Srinivas Poojary defended the government’s move to have special poojas in muzrai temples saying there was nothing wrong in “seeking refuge in God”.

“People have been in deep crisis due to non-availability of drinking water and fodder for their cattle. I am sure that our combined prayers will bring rains,” he told Deccan Herald on Friday.

Asked whether it was ideal to resort to such measures, Poojary said  it was a matter of faith and it would be incorrect to question this aspect. Can’t the same money be spent more effectively – even for upgrading the temples? “We are upgrading the temples, and there is a separate budget for that. This is a different issue,” Poojary said.

Stating that the government would not withdraw the order, he said it would consider suggestions on “cutting down costs” for the poojas.

Revanna’s support

Displaying the circular in the Legislative Assembly, JD(S) leader H D Revanna said: “The government must pray to the Almighty over the drought in the month of Shravana.

Conduct homa and havana through the Muzrai department. We (the JD-S MLAs) are ready to give a month’s salary to pay for aagamikas (priests) to conduct poojas,” he said.

The suggestion of Revanna, a  devout believer in God and rituals, was countered by his party colleague C S Putte Gowda who found no merit in performing such rituals.

“When people are demanding drinking water, we are giving Rs 5,000 to temples. This is nothing but foolishness. Let us give the treasury key too to the priests,” he said sarcastically.

Poojary said he had suggested to the government to request all churches and mosques to conduct special prayers seeking the blessings of the God in this hour of distress.

“Churches and mosques, as I know, do not come under the purview of the Muzrai department. Hence, I have made a request to the government,” he said.

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