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Hindus Upset Over Ban On Holy Dot
BBC ^ | 9-8-2007 | Amarnath Tewary

Posted on 09/08/2007 12:24:58 PM PDT by blam

Hindus upset over ban on holy dot

By Amarnath Tewary
BBC News, Bihar

Mr Mishra has worn the tilak throughout his career

A senior official in India's Bihar state faces suspension for wearing the Hindu red mark on his forehead at work. Lakshman Mishra, deputy director of the agriculture department, is accused of breaching a new government dress code.

He says he has worn the mark, or tilak, on his forehead at work for 30 years and it is his religious right to do so.

His colleagues support him - nearly all of them arrived at work on Friday wearing red marks in protest, and unions are threatening mass action.

Suicide threat

Mr Mishra's troubles began in August when new guidelines were issued on what state government officials could wear at the office.

His department head, CK Anil, warned Mr Mishra that he considered his tilak to be in breach of the code.

When he refused to remove it, Mr Anil recommended him for suspension.

Mr Anil is a young, no-nonsense civil service high-flier who has already reprimanded staff in another department for spitting out betel leaf they had been chewing at work.

He is currently not taking calls from the media.

Many people in northern India wear the red holy mark on their foreheads and it is a common sight in government offices.

Mr Mishra says he has no intention of giving up the practice.

"I've been sporting the red holy dot on my forehead for the last 30 years of my career," he told the BBC.

"It has religious sentiment for me and if somebody goes on harassing me on this pretext I'll have no option but to commit suicide."

Anger

Barring some senior officials, all the employees of the state agriculture department went to work on Friday with tilaks on their foreheads in protest at his treatment.

Civil servants came out in protest on Friday

They laid siege to Mr Anil's office and demanded he withdraw his recommendation that Mr Mishra be suspended.

"The officer's move has hurt our religious sentiments and as our protest against his order we've come to the office today adorning our foreheads with the red dot. Let him suspend all of us now," said union leader Baidyanath Yadav.

Several other state government unions are also angry and are threatening mass protests if his suspension order is not revoked with immediate effect.

Even state Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh agrees, saying "no one should be suspended for wearing a holy tilak as it's a matter of personal choice".


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: dot; hindus; holy; india

1 posted on 09/08/2007 12:25:00 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam

Right now the enemy of my enemy is my friend. I’m sure not going to pile onto the Hindus for ANYTHING when India is a bulwark against Islam.


2 posted on 09/08/2007 12:27:39 PM PDT by Artemis Webb (RON PAUL: "It will be a little bit better now with the democrats now in charge of oversight ")
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To: blam

Let the guy have his dot. This is silly.


3 posted on 09/08/2007 12:28:07 PM PDT by The Ghost of FReepers Past (Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light..... Isaiah 5:20)
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To: blam

Okay, who’s outsourcing PC to India?


4 posted on 09/08/2007 12:29:00 PM PDT by sionnsar (trad-anglican.faithweb.com |Iran Azadi| 5yst3m 0wn3d - it's N0t Y0ur5 (SONY) | UN: Useless Nations)
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To: blam
I just wish people would mind their own business. If he wants to wear the dot, let him! Who is he hurting? Is his department head a muzzie? Makes me wonder.
5 posted on 09/08/2007 12:29:53 PM PDT by alice_in_bubbaland (Ron Paul is nutcase, plain & simple.)
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To: alice_in_bubbaland

sounds like it. They do have a very large Muzzie population.


6 posted on 09/08/2007 12:32:39 PM PDT by Blogger (Propheteuon.com)
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Comment #7 Removed by Moderator

To: blam
His colleagues support him - nearly all of them arrived at work on Friday wearing red marks in protest, and unions are threatening mass action.

Good.

8 posted on 09/08/2007 12:33:06 PM PDT by SIDENET (Inventor of the 12-hour "power nap".)
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To: blam

It’s not like he was posing for a driver’s license photo in a burka, is it?


9 posted on 09/08/2007 12:33:11 PM PDT by dsc (There is no safety for honest men except by believing all possible evil of evil men. Edmund Burke)
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To: blam
"It has religious sentiment for me and if somebody goes on harassing me on this pretext I'll have no option but to commit suicide."

Ummm....what?

10 posted on 09/08/2007 12:33:41 PM PDT by tsmith130
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To: blam

This makes no sense.

These folks are not our enemies.


11 posted on 09/08/2007 12:34:50 PM PDT by nmh (Intelligent people recognize Intelligent Design (God) .)
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past

And let the Sikh have his turban, and maybe the Christian have their crucifix. It’s one thing to have subtle religious symbols, quite another to have a person try to convert you. Professional cube dwellers have known the difference for at least a generation.

Heck, in the old days, an aspiring worker had to go to church where the boss went — I used to pastor a church where all of the Ford management people went ‘cause it was the place to be seen.


12 posted on 09/08/2007 12:36:02 PM PDT by TWohlford
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To: blam

His only option is suicide? I dunno, but there may be more to this than just a dot.


13 posted on 09/08/2007 12:36:26 PM PDT by mtbopfuyn (I think the border is kind of an artificial barrier - San Antonio councilwoman Patti Radle)
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To: Artemis Webb

Why are Indians our enemies?


14 posted on 09/08/2007 12:38:23 PM PDT by billybudd
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To: TWohlford
And let the Sikh have his turban, and maybe the Christian have their crucifix.
15 posted on 09/08/2007 12:38:24 PM PDT by sionnsar (trad-anglican.faithweb.com |Iran Azadi| 5yst3m 0wn3d - it's N0t Y0ur5 (SONY) | UN: Useless Nations)
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To: Blogger
I know, hubby works with a very nice Hindu man and they hate the muzzies. He said that they will smile to your face and stab you in the back, given the first chance.
16 posted on 09/08/2007 12:40:20 PM PDT by alice_in_bubbaland (Ron Paul is nutcase, plain & simple.)
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To: TWohlford
It’s one thing to have subtle religious symbols, quite another to have a person try to convert you.

That doesn't bother me at all. In a pluralistic society, even religious folks need to get to say their piece. The athiests are constantly proselytizing. Why not the religious folks.

What bothers me is the notion that there are several hundred million people in the world who would like to convert me at the tip of a scimitar.

17 posted on 09/08/2007 12:45:46 PM PDT by ModelBreaker
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To: blam
aaaarrrggghh. how does the dot hurt anyone??

btw, in my new religion, we worship the period and his son the comma.

18 posted on 09/08/2007 12:45:48 PM PDT by GeronL
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To: blam

A tilaka is a vertical line or oblong dot usually red in color on the forehead of men and in the hair part on married women that has social stature/religious meanings. The single dot seen on the forehead of indian women that westerners are most familiar with is called a bindi, and is considered just a hindu cosmetic ornament nowadays, and corresponds to the sixth chakra point of bodily energy flow,and can be purchased in convenient disposable peel-and-sticks, or more ornate versions for special events.


19 posted on 09/08/2007 12:46:58 PM PDT by SpaceBar
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To: blam

Holy Ban, Dotman!, will this madness ever end?


20 posted on 09/08/2007 12:48:37 PM PDT by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: alice_in_bubbaland; Blogger
Is his department head a muzzie?

Remember, India has been a secular state since its inception. In some places, that is taken seriously, especially by the bureaucracy.

As for the dept. head mentioned here, C.K. Anil, just going by the name, he is not a Muslim.

21 posted on 09/08/2007 12:48:54 PM PDT by CarrotAndStick (The articles posted by me needn't necessarily reflect my opinion.)
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To: TWohlford
Frankly, if a guy who owns a business wants to hire mostly people from his own church then let him. But once hired, they should not have to hide their religion. This is not because I value all religion equally. This is because I believe in religious freedom. I don't think you can even say "no proselytizing" in and around work -- for example during lunch, unless it is a business lunch. But at work you are paid to focus 100% on the job. So it isn't about proselytizing as much as it is about doing something other than what you are paid to do.

I would not carry this over to immorality. If a guy wants to show up wearing a dress or flaunting his immorality then I say fire him. The line between no morals and no ethics is pretty thin. Cheaters are cheaters. I am not a believer in the idea that a person can be a loser in his private life and it has nothing to do with his public or professional life. Bad character is bad character.

22 posted on 09/08/2007 12:49:53 PM PDT by The Ghost of FReepers Past (Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light..... Isaiah 5:20)
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past
Bad character is bad character.

That bears repeating.

L

23 posted on 09/08/2007 12:53:09 PM PDT by Lurker ( Comparing moderate islam to extremist islam is like comparing smallpox to ebola.)
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To: TWohlford

I do not understand your post at all. You used to pastor a Christian church but you are opposed to evangelism? “Maybe” let Christians have a cross?


24 posted on 09/08/2007 12:54:44 PM PDT by Greg F (Duncan Hunter is a good man.)
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To: blam
Gimme my dot or I'll kill myself!
25 posted on 09/08/2007 12:55:02 PM PDT by Jorge
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To: blam

The difference between a dot and a burka is beyond words ... I’d say let him keep it.


26 posted on 09/08/2007 12:57:38 PM PDT by Centurion2000 (“Jesus Saves. Moses Delivers. Cthulu Reposesses...”)
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Tilak: A red mark worn between the eyebrows symbolising the eye of inner vision, or spiritual wisdom.

New Delhi's women apply tilak to troops and tie the rakhi(a band symbolizing protection) around their wrists before they leave for war (year 1965).

27 posted on 09/08/2007 1:17:15 PM PDT by CarrotAndStick (The articles posted by me needn't necessarily reflect my opinion.)
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To: blam
Tilak Applicator:


28 posted on 09/08/2007 2:07:58 PM PDT by mikrofon (Sikh humour, admittedly ;)
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To: SpaceBar

Yesterday I saw a man with a red dot on his forehead and around it was drawn a red line. What is that?

As far as him wearing it at work, why not? Are they going to stop women from wearing red lipstick?


29 posted on 09/08/2007 2:12:56 PM PDT by Ditter
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past

I say dots okay, but if they demand comas, off with their heads.


30 posted on 09/08/2007 2:25:13 PM PDT by DoughtyOne ((Victory will never be achieved while defining Conservatism downward, and forsaking its heritage.))
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To: DoughtyOne

ROTFL! That’s funny.


31 posted on 09/08/2007 2:27:12 PM PDT by The Ghost of FReepers Past (Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light..... Isaiah 5:20)
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To: blam
"It has religious sentiment for me and if somebody goes on harassing me on this pretext I'll have no option but to commit suicide."

Oh for Pete's sake, leave the man alone. That red dot isn't going to hurt ANYONE, except those from the ROP who want to control the world. I can see them complaining about that little red dot.

32 posted on 09/08/2007 2:37:44 PM PDT by NRA2BFree (It's time for "Tea Party II" -This time well meet at the border and toss Mexicans back over it.)
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past; All


Evidence is in. Hillary is going to try to be all things to all people.  Photographed
here at an invitaion only Indian gathering, Hillary exhibits the look she developed
after consultation with DNC Hindu consultants.

After event debriefings seem to indicate Hillary's new look puzzled most Hindu
attendees, who couldn't figure out if we was going for a Jabba the Hut look, or
that of a beloved Surpent Master that hadn't been seen since the third millinium BC.

33 posted on 09/08/2007 2:38:57 PM PDT by DoughtyOne ((Victory will never be achieved while defining Conservatism downward, and forsaking its heritage.))
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To: alice_in_bubbaland; Blogger

Muslims are underrepresented in civil service in India at about 1% depending on whose stats you believe. According to the 2001 census of India, the population as a whole is 13.4% Muslim. However, most of the Indians I’ve talked to are unabashedly anti-Muslim, and I think that is representative of their society as a whole.


34 posted on 09/08/2007 2:40:26 PM PDT by amchugh (large and largely disgruntled)
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To: billybudd

I think he meant Muslims, reread his comment.


35 posted on 09/08/2007 2:41:30 PM PDT by amchugh (large and largely disgruntled)
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To: DoughtyOne

I had to sprinkle holy water on my monitor after that was displayed!


36 posted on 09/08/2007 2:48:57 PM PDT by ikka
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To: ikka

LOL, did it work? Look, if you have to replace it, I’m sorry.


37 posted on 09/08/2007 2:51:00 PM PDT by DoughtyOne ((Victory will never be achieved while defining Conservatism downward, and forsaking its heritage.))
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To: Blogger

‘sounds like it. They do have a very large Muzzie population.’

Our muslim population is 2.6%. If you think that is a very large muslim population, you’d better get your borders closed as you’re overtaking us!


38 posted on 09/08/2007 3:05:39 PM PDT by britemp
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To: britemp

‘‘sounds like it. They do have a very large Muzzie population.’

Our muslim population is 2.6%. If you think that is a very large muslim population, you’d better get your borders closed as you’re overtaking us!”

LOL, ignore that post - one too many beers before a quick freep is a bad idea - it’s 11pm here and I’ve just got in from the pub, thought it was about Britain! Hic! :)


39 posted on 09/08/2007 3:08:13 PM PDT by britemp
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To: blam

Better a person with a red dot on the forehead than a person with a large callus on the forehead where he has been beating his head against the ground five times a day.


40 posted on 09/08/2007 3:56:07 PM PDT by Ruy Dias de Bivar (Ever see WILLIS SHAW backwards in your rear view mirror? I have!)
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To: blam

Dot’s just not right. Leave the guy alone.


41 posted on 09/08/2007 3:58:42 PM PDT by ovrtaxt (Sworn to oppose control freaks, foreign and domestic.)
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To: britemp

:) No, it was India. There are approximately 174 million Muslims in India, i.e 16.4% of the population.

That’s a whole bunch of Muslims.


42 posted on 09/08/2007 4:04:59 PM PDT by Blogger (Propheteuon.com)
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To: DoughtyOne

Are you the “doty” one by any chance?


43 posted on 09/08/2007 4:12:35 PM PDT by Gengis Khan
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To: Gengis Khan

Not that you are aware of... ;-)


44 posted on 09/08/2007 4:36:28 PM PDT by DoughtyOne ((Victory will never be achieved while defining Conservatism downward, and forsaking its heritage.))
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