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Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Gehlot govt. issues ad to ‘not kill birds’ on Makar Sankranti

Imagine a government, anywhere in the world, wishing its people on a festival. What would you expect? A message of joy, cheer, goodwill, positivity, you say? Welcome to the Republic of India. Here, our ‘secular’ governments never lose a chance to lecture the Hindu ‘majority’ on how to behave while celebrating their festivals, that they are reluctantly granted permission (for now) to celebrate.

“Don’t burst crackers on Diwali, don’t waste water on holi, don’t create noise pollution on Ganesh Chaturthi, don’t pollute water bodies on Chhath puja, don’t be sexist on Raksha Bandhan, don’t celebrate Durga’s slaying of ‘tribal king’ Mahishasur, don’t worship Vishnu on Onam, don’t buy earthen diyas from road-side stalls (new one added using pandemic pretext)”…..the list goes on.

Today is Makar Sankranti, and the Ashok Gehlot led Congress Govt. of Rajasthan decided to ‘wish’ its Hindu citizens on one of their most important festivals with a large newspaper ad with the plea – “mute birds appeal, let us fly free, do not kill us”. 

So is Makar Sankranti a festival about killing birds? Are the birds being offered as sacrifice to God like is done with goats, cows, and camels in another festival celebrated with much gusto by 1.8 billion people around the world, and which our ‘secular’ governments and celebrities always promote as a festival of peace, simplicity and harmony?

No. Some Hindus fly kites on Makar Sankranti, and sometimes birds accidentally get injured as they are caught up in manja (kite string), particularly if banned manja coated with glass or other sharp/dangerous material is used for flying the kite.

Now, many countries have kite-flying festivals in some shape or form, and as is the case with any human activity, there is the possibility of causing accidental harm to self, others or the environment. But should that possibility of harm become the central messaging behind a festival? Doesn’t the animal rights messaging then become another way of saying – stop celebrating this festival.

The Rajasthan govt. ad also warns people from flying kites near time of sunrise (morning 6 – 8 AM) and sunset (evening 5 – 7 PM), as that is claimed to be the ‘time when birds fly’.

So we see that the secular state has already progressed from banning the use of wrong kind of kite-string (a valid measure), to ruling all kite-flying as dangerous to birds! The ad does not specify what punishment will be meted out to those who break this directive, but one can rest assured that govt, courts and other tribunals will soon work out an effective deterrent just as they cracked down and arrested Hindus whose children ‘dared’ to burst Diwali crackers in Delhi.

We will leave the readers with this talk by Dr. Koenraad Elst titled ‘Makar Sankranti: The Greatest Festival on Earth‘ delivered for the Centre for Indic Studies.

The introduction to this talk interprets the real intent behind the Rajasthan govt. ad –

“Belgian Indologist Koenraad Elst explains what Makar Sankranti is and how Hindu festivals are shamed and slandered by Christian and anti-Hindu lobbies. Makar Sankranti is a Hindu festival marking the entry of the Sun into the constellation of Makar (Capricorn).

However, in modern anti-Hindu propaganda Makar Sankranti is a target of festival shaming, one facet of the bigger phenomenon of Hindu Shaming. According to this strategy, some faults are found with all Hindu festivals and they are slandered for one reason or the other.

It is said that on Makar Sankranti many birds die due to the kite flying which is a part of the festival and so it should not be celebrated. Dr. Elst says that the world over every culture has the kite flying festival almost at the same time and no one bothers about those festivals.

While festivals and traditions and even fashions of the Christian countries are celebrated as hip, Hindu festivals are castigated as un-ecological, dirty, unhygienic, repressive and regressive and a plea is made to stop celebrating them.

Elst warns that it is necessary to understand this anti-Hindu game and celebrate Makar Sankranti as it should be, with fanfare, and yes, with kite flying!”

Today, even the simple act of celebrating ours festivals is an important way to resist the oppression of the anti-Hindu secular state. Fly that kite, make that rangoli, perform those rituals, cook the special festival food, understand the true meaning behind our festivals, join the community celebration, involve your kids – honour your ancestors, your civilisation and live free.

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