Preserve the ornaments offered to Shri Vitthal instead of melting them and publish the report on the misappropriation of ornaments !

Memoradum sumitted to Solapur’s Dy District Collector

Dy District Collector, Solapur Shama Pawar (seated) receives the memorandum from HJS activists Rajan Bunage and Vinod Rasal

Solapur : The State Government has granted permission to the Vitthal Devasthan Committee to melt the gold-silver ornaments donated by devotees. Shri Vitthal is the worshipped Deity of the whole of Maharashtra and the seat of the worship of millions of devotees. The ornaments donated from the year 1985 till now are going to be melted which includes 28 kgs gold and 996 kgs silver ornaments. As per the Government’s instructions, bricks of pure gold and silver will be made and handed over to the temple committee. The ornaments are donated by devotees; so, what right the Government has to take such decision of melting the ornaments?  The ornaments belong to a very old period and were valuable, donated during the period of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, the Holkars, Peshavas, or Shindes and they should be preserved. Considering the happenings with the ornaments, the scam report should be published, are the demands made by Hindu Janajagruti Samiti (HJS) with the Government. A memorandum with these demands was handed over to the Dy District Collector of Solapur, Shama Pawar on 15.11.2021 by HJS activists Rajan Bunage, Vikram Ghodke, Dattatreya Pise, and Vinod Rasal, etc.

It will be difficult to investigate the scam and find out which ornaments are missing if the ornaments are melted !

In 2012, The Law Department inspected the ornaments donated to God and found that some of the ornaments were missing, but the report was later suppressed. This report should be published and people should know the truth. There is a possibility of some more ornaments getting misplaced from 1985 to 2012. If the ornaments are melted now, it would be difficult to investigate the missing ornaments and there can be malpractices even in that work, as stated by HJS in its memorandum.

 

It has been stated in the memorandum that,

1. The vessels used regularly for curd and milk used in ‘puja’ and to keep ‘Naivedya’ should be preserved as devotees have religious sentiments towards them. Such ancient items are very rare and instead of melting them, an exhibition can be set up for our future generations to know the history of Warkari traditions of Maharashtra. In England and America, even simple, small things like pens, etc are also preserved as a legacy, then why our temple committee cannot preserve the ancient ornaments?

2. Similar decision was taken even by Tamil Nadu Government and had started the process of melting 2138 kgs of temple gold but after it was challenged in the Court, Madras High Court had imposed restrictions on that process. Also, who will be responsible if there is any misappropriation in the process of melting gold? Therefore, the ornaments donated to Shri Vitthal should be preserved rather than melting.

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