Ayodhya ruling: Ravi Shankar appeals for peace, harmony

"People should maintain peace and harmony after the September 24 verdict. They should restrain themselves from indulging in any form of communal hatred," Ravi Shankar said on the sidelines of a function to announce an inter-faith summit aimed at removing HIV/AIDS related stigma.

Speaking on the issue General Secretary of the All-India Association of Imams Umair Iiyasi said he has asked "imams of over five lakh mosques to appeal to Muslims brothers to maintain peace and not to celebrate or mourn after the verdict on Friday".

The spiritual leaders along with Head of Zoroastrian community Ervad M H Bharucha today announced a two-day summit 'Faith in Action 2010' in Bangalore from September 27, where around 400 religious leaders from communities such as Buddhism and Christianity will meet to find a sustainable way to fight against HIV/AIDS and spread awareness to stop spreading of the virus.

"It is important today that religious leaders come together on issues like HIV/AIDS... stigma and dogma against the patients would take a backseat if they come together because they are successful in mobilising positive social change," the Art of Living founder Ravi Shankar said.

He said around 300 representatives of various Hindus sects will attend the summit and they would help in propagating awareness against HIV/AIDS and related stigma. He said issues like use of contraceptives and condoms, on which there are diverse views, will also be discussed.

Supporting Ravi Shankar's views, Imam Iiyasi said, "We have five lakh 30 thousand mosques and we will ask imams to spread awareness to fight HIV/AIDS by teaching them how to protect themselves from the virus and how to behave with infected people."
He also advised people to practise yoga as it helps "body immunity" to fight the HIV and said "yoga is not unIslamic and any Muslim can practise it."

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