CHURUMURI POLL: Lord Rama, man or myth?

As if India’s political pond wasn’t muddied enough, the Archaeological Survey of India has lobbed a boulder in its backwaters by telling the Supreme Court that there is no “historical record” to incontrovertibly establish the existence of Lord Rama, the other characters of the Ramayana, or the events depicted in it. The ASI’s submission comes in its affidavit on the Ram Sethu project—the 26 km, Rs 2,800 canal cleared by the BJP-led NDA government that seeks to provide a shorter sea route to Sri Lanka from Rameshwaram. Work on the project has come to a halt following claims that it imperils the bridge built by Rama’s monkey brigade to reach Lanka to save Sita from Ravana.

Predictably, the BJP sees the Congress-led UPA government’s hand behind it all. It has termed the ASI submission “sheer blasphemy” and “an insult to Hindu sentiments, a ferocious one”. Vishwa Hindu Parishad activists have blocked rail and road traffic, and clashed with the police in several parts of the country. The BJP’s Ravi Shankar Prasad has already spoken of the Ram Sethu taking on the dimensions of the Ram Janmabhoomi movement while calling the ASI’s submission as a “classic patent example of appeasement politics”.

“We wonder why Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress chief Sonia Gandhi have been going for the Dussehra festival if their government does not believe in Lord Ram’s existence,” the BJP’s Vijay Kumar Malhotra has been quoted as saying.

Questions: Is the ASI wrong in questioning the physical historical existence of Lord Rama or other mythological characters in order to make a scientific case for the canal? Or is the BJP right in claiming that the Ram Sethu is “a fact, not a myth“, and that it was used for “pedestrian traffic” till AD 1480? Is the Congress-led UPA indulging in “minority appeasement”, or is the BJP-led NDA indulging in “majority appeasement” to whip up an electoral frenzy? Does the Ram Sethu have the momentum to become another Ayodhya movement?

Also read: Was there really a Ram Sethu?

Above: A satellite picture, courtesy NASA, of the Ram Sethu aka Adam’s Bridge

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32 Responses to “CHURUMURI POLL: Lord Rama, man or myth?”

  1. Prashant Krishnamurthy Says:

    Churumuri’s headline is inaccurate. It should have been “Lord Rama: Man, Myth or Political Football”? This is what the BJP and their self-serving netas have reduced “Maryada Purushotham” to. Don’t they have anything else to play with when they are out of power? How must the world be looking at their infantile antics? The party cannot come to a consensus on a nuclear bill which we can see, touch and feel, and which may actually help Rama’s children. On the other hand, it can see, touch and feel a bridge allegedly constructed 15,000 years ago by a bunch of apes who weren’t smart enough to leave their blueprint for the ASI to produce in court. Shame.

  2. Ravi Says:

    A million year old Coral reef doesn’t matter?

    Why do we need that to be demolished?
    So that LTTE may expand into piracy?

  3. Nastika Says:

    I just heard Murli Manohar Joshi demanding Astrology & Numerology to be made University study subjects :)

  4. T.Shetty Says:

    Last time I checked, there was no ‘evidence’ to prove the existence of any God!!

    In any society, Religious sentiments do matter (unless you are ruled by crazy communists) and there is nothing wrong in protecting those with religious feelings attached. You can see this all over the world from US to Israel to Iran.

    Why pick on BJP now?

  5. Aruna Urs Says:

    Read “History of God” by Karen Armstrong

  6. Bomma Says:

    crazy communists = crazy christians = crazy muslims = crazy hindus. Lets pick on BJP since they represent the crazy hindus.

  7. Suhas Ghosh Says:

    The debate is not about Ram-Setu anymore. It has now reached whether Lord Rama existed or not – matter of faith which is outside preview of enquiry.

    Does same logic of “scientific spirit” also applicable for Christianity, Islam? There are tons and tons of questions raised by ‘secular’ scholars worldwide questioning very existance of Jesus or Muhamud. Does one single Indian “secularist” have guts to utter the same words? They know they will be met with violence.

    There is one un-used Mosque in the middle of Calcutta Airport, which Calcutta High Court ruled to be relocated for Pubic Safety. However “Secular” Marxists did NOT comply with Court directive, kept the Mosque which is a huge security risk (jehadis as well as bird-hit), an spent additional 500 Crore to create an extended runway.

    This is ‘secularism’ what it has been reduced to now in India. Hostlity towards anything Hinduism, Hindu culture, and rationalize, pamper, further regressive minoritism.

    Nehru’s seculaism (with its limitations) was accepted by people to a degree BECAUSE IT WAS PRINCIPLED, but today ‘secularism’ is naked, ill-logical, changes its color depending on religion.

    Take my warning seriously: A serious damage is being done to secularism by select english media , politicians in India. Nowhere in the world these sort of double standard in media, or politics is allowed.

    Its balatant communalism which has now infected Indian secularists. They are trying to survive not based on PRINCIPLES (like Nehru), but by controlling media, votebank.

    Future is full of danger which is seculaists own creation.

  8. thejas Says:

    this is non-sense. we never question Jesus Christ’s existence, neither Allah’s. But this UPA is all out there to hurt the belief of crores of people. Whether Rama existed or not, whether he is a man or myth is not the question. The question is about the belief of so many people.
    Just think, if there were a mosque or church near the current Sethusamudram project. would the UPA still gone with the project?
    I need not be a Hindu fanatic to understand the ulterior intentions of the Centre. Any ordinary Indian can say this – UPA is there to appease minorities and hurt Hindus.

    by the way, Rama is just not limited to India and Hindus. Millions of Indonesians, including Muslims, worship Rama.

  9. vinay Says:

    either way…no one seems to care for the coral reef which supports millions of organisms / animals

  10. dr ramesh Says:

    once UPA got to know from sources that if elections are to held now ,they would gain– they r showing their true colours. can the govt issue same statements against christ,islam or other religions, no way.
    every person is entitled to have faith in his or her religion , who the hell is ASI to issue certificate on a religion.
    more over the entire project is being carried out to please DMK( can receive hundreds of crores as kick back) .

  11. Soundar Says:

    Let me guess, the VHP’s historian in residence would be P.N.Oak-he of the ‘Tejo Mahalaya’ fame.

    In any case anyone is free to harness God in support. No less an academic of the stature of George Dubya Bush claimed that God was on his side in his decimation of Iraqi women and children.

  12. Sathya Says:

    ASI – What it is ? It is nothing but a department of the Central Government. Anybody who is familiar with the Govt. departments know well the working of the system. Gret scholars, intellectuals never follow the dictums of the extablishment. They can only comment on Hindu Gods, temples and give evidence inthe court or submit affidavits. When there are so many controversial structures and other things where they have to do their job in preserving what they are doing? View things objectively, whether Rama/ the Ramayana existed or not, that cannot be decided in a court of law or Indians need not be satisfied by the certificates of ASI. It can only mean As I……said

  13. induramesh Says:

    You doubt the existence of Rama, You doubt the existence of Ram Temple, You dont believe that Rama built the bridge to Lanka. Okay you are “secular”-Whatever that means in this day and age. I think Congress is out commit harakiri. All those people on all those news channels supporting the ASI seem to be the 2% English speaking socalled secularists and they really dont count in any election.
    And then if as Prashant Krishnamurthy says that the BJP is making Rama a football, who will speak up for Rama or any Hindu sentiment in this country? The ASI has no doubt got its instructions from UPA, especially DMK. As Vinay says, Forget Rama, What about the strong Coral Reef, which the experts believe helped in containin Tsunami and not allowing it reach the western coast of India in 2004?

  14. shanks Says:

    Everyone is talking about what BJP and VHP is saying about the bridge. Has anyone who are so much bothered about our own Thermal Plant taking about anything about utter disregard to environment and the damage it can create to the vast coral reefs.

    Some people are so obsessed with BJP/VHP to an extent whatever it says it is wrong. But the same is being said by the Left and it is well appreciated.

    Lets take moral policing allegedly done by VHP/Shiv Sana on ‘valentine’s Day’. They cried as if heavens have fallen down. But same people are taking about ways to curb what should go on Air in our TV’s and Radio’s. Let this country go to dogs …. Let’s have MMS which are in circulation for dubious reasons, let boys and girls have fun openly at cafes and Pubs. Nobody dare question or police them for “MORAL” reasons.

    This is what they have said and asked for. Same with Lord Ram, in the same breath let the govt also say there is no existence of Mohamed and obviously destroying a Masjid is legal. No sentiments period. Are they ready for that.

  15. koppal haida Says:

    so these upa SOBs want evidence.. do they have the same temerity to question what was there in hazratbal?Was it mohammed’s hair or that of some animal? no body knows but no one can ever question that.. unfortunately, it is true that the inidan majoritycommunity has been always betrayed a paucity of testicular fortitude.. the results are for all to see..

  16. Sathya Says:

    KH, yes you are tight.

  17. Sathya Says:

    The latest point is that according to ndtv the Government has admitted that it is a mistake that it has failed an affidavit with mistakes. And this comes after Sonia Gandhi”s intervention. Believe that the Law minister had said that Ram did not exist. Think of the fate of India when we have a law minister of the calibre Bhagat. Is it damage controlling act to savethe face…

  18. thejas Says:

    but where is my post?

  19. sumakani Says:

    Let’s ask the people in ASI whoever prepared the affidavit to say that there is no evidence to say Rama was real. Let those officers clarify me that how they can say there father (as per records) is reaally their father except that it was only faith and their mom told them that so and so is your father. FOr everything there need not be any evidence in the form of fossils etc., let them go and ask their mothers how they can say so and so is really their father.

  20. Srinivas Says:

    Churmuri has become mouth piece of Christian loundy Sonia. few bosterds here say no RAM exist. For them not one father exists but multiple exists

  21. Ravi Says:

    Can we prove the existence of God ofr certain? If you were to submit an affidavit about this – a false one would lead to contempt of court – you would have to state that you cannot establish it with certainity.

    I think Ramayana & Mahabharatha are mostly fiction – great ones mind you – and based on some real life characters/kings their stories of the time. They were embellished over the years by different authors.

    There is historical evidence though for the existence of Mahavira, Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed etc. They were just spiritual leaders who founded religions. Some may claim them to be messengers of God.

    I never see all these religious fanatics come out to fight for schools, education, hospitals etc. They are always in force for mosques, temples, religious icons – which neither feeds our kids nor provides education.

    Coming to the Sethusmaudram project, it was revived in 1999 by the BJP government and a Rs. 4.8 crore allocation made in the 2000-2001 budget for a feasibility study. Why are they opposed now?

  22. krishna Says:

    hmm ,

    unfortunatley ghandhi said Hey Ram when he was shot
    according to ASI he was saying Hi Rum!
    Ram nam satya Hai? or is it? Ram or not to Ram

  23. NS Rao Says:

    Shame on all the bastards of UPA – they do not have common sense.

    Added to this, they proudly parade their sychopancy by mentioning that their Chairperson ordered the correction. My Foot!!

    Last thing we needed in our country was our epics dictated and corrected by someone born near Vatican city!!

  24. verybleedingheart Says:

    The existence of Lord Rama is questioned, not during a heated election campaign or in the lecture halls of JNU, but in the Supreme court. The government’s own top lawyer would have carefully drafted his presentation and then only declared so in front of the judges. Then, who is behind this very secular manoeuvre? The professional rationalists within the UPA should have provided the inspiration. They make fun of idol worship, but install umpteen statutes for their late rational leader who made a lifetime career destroying Vinayaka idols and “decorating” Rama’s portraits with chappals! They also know that Hindus are easy game. Our secular brokers dare not question “mythologies” of their votebank religions.

    Anyhow, Madame Sonia G, should not have retreated so hastilty. In any event, the group of “eminent historians” would have come to her rescue, unless they are busy with overseas engagements, deriding Hindutva.

  25. Kadana Kuthuhala Says:

    If Ram==Myth then Prophet==Terrorist or Christ==Fake. This congress gov can only irritate hindus or achieve their political goals at the expense of hinduism. Once in detriot three or four years ago, Chidambaram was making a speech. Initially he thought he was addressing a tamil crowd. He started off bashing karnataka big time. Soon he realised that there were more non tamils in the audience, he immediately changed the tone. This is our revered finance minister. I used to be a big fan of his until then. Congress and its followers should be sent to saudi arabia or other islamic countries. Not that I support BJP, I’m only saying that congress is as much pain as the BJP is to the people.

  26. Shamsher Balram Says:

    If rama is a myth…then Jesus christ is a Myth, Prophet mohammad is a Myth. Politiicians in India can very easily play with the Hindu centiments, they dont dare to come with with similar points for mohammad and jesus. Politicians provide free haj travels for muslims, encourage christian missionaries to openly preach christianity and convert peopel of other religions to christianity, In a country where moew than 82% of the population is Hindus cant take the ganesh idols thru the area of muslims and mosques, if it is done the leading person gets arrested but this does not happen to muslims or christians who enjoy more previlege than hindus in this country of Hindu majority and when it comes to Hinduism, they have not left any space to hurt the hindu centiments,they have taken hindus for granted , we must not spare these bastard politicians lets pull up our socks and start the attempt of subduing the muslims and christians in this Hindu majority country and reinstate the Glory of Hinduism. It is high time for us the citizens of india[ hindus] to understand and realize we need to bring a major hindu party into power with absolute majority….i appeal to all the hindus in india to favor all their votes to a major hindu party like BJP….and bring them in power….this is the only way we can protect our Hindu religion, the existence of hindu religion and make Hindi religon also equally respectable as the other minor relgion are given improtance here…..

  27. Shamsher Balram Says:

    karunanidi says was Lord rama an engineer to build the ram sethu….why dosent he say was babur an engineer to build the babri masjid was shah jahan an engineer to build taj mahal …did shah jahan and babur go to engineering college ?? pyramid of egypt which still attarcts tourists from all over the world was build thousands of years back …were those ancient pharohs engineers to build those pyramids? did they go to some engineering college ?? qutb minar built in 1210 A.D…was qutb-udin-aibek an engineer…???? karunanidi proved he is an ass hole …by passing such statement?? Sonia gandhi who is a christian . a foreighner what does she know about lord RAMA…??? she does not have any rights to talk bout this at all….India is ruined by this politicians by divide and rule method started by the britishers…here they target only hidus …i wud say britishers were atleast lot better than these politicians ..they treated all the religins equally bad by divide and rule method….where as these politicians r targeting only hindus all the time….

  28. Narendran Says:

    All religion speaks about love, affection and respect elders. In Ramayana Valmiki expresses his view of human code of conduct through Rama: life is evanescent and the hedonistic approach to it is meaningless. However, that should not allow one to be indifferent to one’s own rights and duties laid down in the ancient texts. He thus adopts the view that Dharma is what is proclaimed in the Veda and it should be followed for its own sake, not for what it brings you in pain or pleasure. Doing this will ensure one’s welfare in this and the next world. In addition, Ramayana also reinforces the need for thinking about the consequences before making promises, for if you make them you must keep them, no matter how hard it may be.

    Valmiki portrays Rama not as a supernatural being, but as a human with all the attendant shortcomings, who encounters moral dilemmas but who overcomes these by simply adhering to the dharma–the righteous way. There are several instances narrated in Valmiki Ramayana which cast shadows on the pristine character of the hero and reinforce the theme of Rama struggling with mortal flaws and prejudices whilst struggling to follow the path of dharma.

    Does anyone in this world (right now) follow the words of Lord Rama?

    If a project which could bring lots of revenew to this country and would develop our country’s under developed region and improve the people living standard then i am sure that, Lord Rama will approve the project.

    Because God (Lord Rama) always loves his subjects. He would never appreciate fight amongst his subjects.

  29. vamshi Says:

    the point that the ASI makes about the existence of GOD is absolute bullshit. Why the hell should they play with the sentiments of hindus. I don support what the other posts convey, but the point is why the hell these pigheaded politicians bring in the religion issue and play dirty votebank politics. Therez lot 2 b done in the country. rather thn cribbing abt the existence or non-existence of god. why don these politicians fight against the castism, unemployment and other social evils!!!!! well coming to the existence of god, no one can really prove tht, only one’s belief would give the right answer,,,if u believe tht god exists, thn he would and therez no need of any evidence from any asshole ASI 4 tht

  30. Srinidhi Says:

    A banyan Try grows old and sheds its root. Roots grow and finally stems disappears.
    It does not mean stem was never there.

    It’s human tendency to forget the past. It’s been cruelty of man that he always fight what he want not what the truth is. There are very few how believe in truth and leave by it.

    Other people who do not believe and call the believer as mad.
    Indeed they are them self are mad.

    No meaning in fighting against those people.
    This is earth you will get what you sow.

  31. vaibhav bali Says:

    thank u for showing the existence of my god SHREE RAM

  32. Subir Ghosh Says:

    A man whose existence is a myth cannot have a birthplace.

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