SRS accuses SMVDSB for commercializing Aarti at Bhawan

Shri Ram Sena (SRS) today threatened to agitate against Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board (SMVDSB) for commercializing the process of Aarti as a means of generating business making it accessible to only those affluent in the society. Talking to reporters here today, State President, Shri Ram Sena, Rajiv expressed great anguish against the administration of SMVDSB for commercializing the Aarti in the Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Bhawan. State Government had already issued a notification and imposed 12.5 per cent service tax on pilgrims travelling to the Vaishno Devi shrine by helicopter from Katra and this move of Shrine Board further annoy the devotees of Mata Viashno Devi.
The SRS has taken up the issue of imposing service tax on chopper services time and again, Mahajan said, adding that they expressed resentment over the same.
Accusing the shrine board of looting the pilgrims, Rajiv said the fee charged by the board for the two-time conducted Aarti is huge that only the rich people can afford.
He said that the religious sentiments, spiritual emotions and conviction of crore of devotees have been shaken by the Shrine Board because of their impugned act of commercializing the worship at the Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine by fixing the price for attending the Aarti for the devotees who desire to become part of two Aartis being performed outside and inside the Holy Cave of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine.
Such rules set by the Board leave the majority of the pilgrims coming from all over the country with no access to Aarti of the Goddess that everyone should be allowed to attend, he said.
He mentioned that Aarti at two intervals in 24 hours is performed at the holy cave and only those devotees who can pay the exorbitant price fixed by the Shrine Board can participate and those who do not have such huge amount at their credit are not even allowed to enter the entrance gate to even see the said Aarti.
He added that neither the Constitution of India nor any law empowers the Shrine Board to fix the price for the devotees to attend and perform Aarti. He asked to Shrine Board to clarify its stand in the issue and revoke anti-worship decision. Others were present in the press conference Bal Krishan Arora, Aman Gupta, Rakesh Sharma, Ramesh Kumar and others.

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