Birch for temple monsters

DISRESPECT: Pieces of bread and empty corned beef tins left behind by vandals at the Carapo Shiv Mandir  on the weekend. PHOTO COURTESY HANSRAJ RAMDHANIE.
DISRESPECT: Pieces of bread and empty corned beef tins left behind by vandals at the Carapo Shiv Mandir on the weekend. PHOTO COURTESY HANSRAJ RAMDHANIE.

THE EDITOR: What were those monsters thinking of when they entered a Hindu temple and desecrated it by cooking corned beef (of all things) inside of it?

I am a follower of the Christian faith and one of our instructions is to give to Caesar what is Caesar’s. And I take that to mean obeying all the secular laws of the land in which one resides. And one of the laws of our country is that every citizen has a right to his or her choice of worship/religion.

Since gaining independence we have boasted and inadvertently demonstrated to the rest of the world our tolerance (one of our watchwords) for diverse religious beliefs.

Without getting carried away with emotional sentiments, let me get straight to the point and suggest here that there should be a reward for anyone who can expose the culprits of this repugnant act. Because they committed that repulsive act not just against the Hindu community, but they did it to all of us.

The act can only be interpreted as planting seeds of religious discrimination and prejudice. We just need to look around and take note of the unending global miseries religious division continues to trigger.

I’ve always been an advocate for the return of the hangman. I say return because although a specific penalty for murder is still in our written laws and even with the ever-increasing hundreds of murders every year, the hangman appears to have fallen asleep for more than two decades.

So here I am advocating for the return of another once appropriate but now apparently lost punishment for certain crimes – the birch. It should be brought back given the numerous reports of sexual and other physical abuse against women. And keeping in mind that while court adjudicators declare “hard labour” for those found guilty of certain offences, what exactly does that comprise of?

As time goes by we can employ the birch for other crimes, like in the desecration of places of worship.

Why the birch for this particular crime? We need to be reminded that one of the sentiments people hold very dear to their hearts (after love and care for their families) is devotion to their particular religious belief. Which should explain the hundreds or thousands of years of scuffle between peoples of the same land but of different religious beliefs.

Acts of this type (desecrating temples, mosques and churches) have that potential to create not just psychosomatic division but physical clashes between normally good-natured citizens. With our boastful “all ah we is one” claim, we don’t really want to go there, do we?

Given our revelry mindset, added to our seemingly eternal political divide, we may just take this “small” temple incident for granted. That is, until it slowly but steadily grows out of hand. That distasteful act can be easily branded as internationally denounced. We’ve got to nip it in the bud right now, with the appropriate punishment, of course.




"Birch for temple monsters"

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