Hindu group protests clubbing Vedas with folk arts
Jersey, November 17
Hindu organisation has protested to Unesco against its decision to club
Vedic chanting tradition as a folk art along with the Belgian carnival of
Binche and Indonesia's Wayang puppet theatre.
deserve a place alongside the Bible and the Koran as seminal texts of a
world religion, should not have been placed on this list, Navya Shastra
Vedic chanting as a "heritage of humanity", Unesco had placed it
along with 27 other cultural expressions.
we laud the preservation of all cultural forms, the Vedas and their
chanting tradition represent the epicentre of the Hindu religion, and do
not belong in this category, which seems to showcase folk arts," said
Navya Shastra chairperson Jaishree Gopal in a statement.
Shastra also charged Unesco with endorsing the caste system by propagating
a five-year plan that encourages preservation of the Vedas in their
Vedas should be open to all Hindus, and not just Brahmins," said Rahul
Saxena, an executive member of Navya Shastra.
that one of the "defining features" of the caste system is that
the Vedas are to be chanted by upper caste males only and socially backward
sections are forbidden to take part in the chant.
Shastra urged all organisations that receive Unesco funding to select
candidates on a "caste-blind basis".