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HomeDaily ReadsFact check: Swami Avimukteshwaranand's Statement on Ram Mandir Misconstrued

Fact check: Swami Avimukteshwaranand’s Statement on Ram Mandir Misconstrued

Claim- Shankaracharya Avimukteshwaranand said if the Shudras enter into the Ram Mandir, they will pollute the temple.
Fact- The main statement does not hold any such content and his statement is being misinterpreted

A recent statement by prominent Hindu leader Swami Avimukteshwaranand regarding the ongoing construction of the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya has gone viral on social media platforms. The viral posts share a particular portion of Shankaracharya’s long interview. The viral posts claim that he has made a derogatory reference to the low caste(Shudras) in one of his statements. See the posts here, here, here, here, here and here.

ss of the viral statement of Shankaracharya (Facebook)
ss of the viral statement of Shankaracharya (X)

Newschecker-Bangladesh has verified and found this claim to be false.

Fact check/Verification

Upon conducting a thorough investigation (video key frame and keyword searches) we came across a three-hour-long interview of Shankaracharya Swami Avimukteshwaranand with the ‘UP Tak’ channel on YouTube. See the video here- Shankaracharya LIVE: राममंदिर प्राण प्रतिष्ठा से ठीक पहले शंकराचार्य ने दे दी चेतावनी! The video was uploaded on January 20, 2024. 

In his interview, Shankaracharya Avimukteshwaranand discusses the seven impurities that arise during any construction project according to Hinduism. He emphasizes that the Pran Pratishtha, a ritual to instil life into a deity, should not be performed until the construction work is complete.

From 15:20 to 15:30 minutes, he explains that if the Pran Pratishtha is conducted while the temple is still incomplete, the construction workers will have to return to the site to resume their work, which will result in the recurrence of those seven impurities.

This particular portion of the main video (15:20-15:30) is being used in the viral videos. While tracking down the claim we found the earliest claim on a page called Bahujanlivesmatter

Swami Avimukteshwaranand reportedly spoke about seven “impurities” that could arise during the consecration ceremony (Pran Pratishtha) if it were to be held before the temple’s construction is complete.  This concern has been misconstrued by some as a prejudiced remark targeting Shudras, the traditionally low caste in Hinduism.

Ashok Sahu, media head for Swami Avimukteshwaranand, has clarified that Swami’s comments were solely focused on the construction process itself and the potential for disruptions caused by resuming construction after the consecration. These disruptions, according to Hindu scriptures, could introduce “impurities” that would necessitate further purification rituals.

This explanation emphasizes that Swami Avimukteshwaranand’s primary concern lies with adhering to religious protocols for the temple’s consecration, not with any social hierarchy. The focus is on ensuring the sanctity of the temple according to Hindu traditions.

Conclusion

The viral statement of Shankaracharya Avimukteshwaranand was misinterpreted. The sole purpose of his statement was to ensure the sanctity of the temple and follow the religious protocols.

Result: Missing context

Our Sources: 
 Main Interview- Shankaracharya LIVE: राममंदिर प्राण प्रतिष्ठा से ठीक पहले शंकराचार्य ने दे दी चेतावनी! 
Ashok Sahu- Media Head of Swami Avimukteshwaranand, Joytir Math.
Newschecker’s Own Analysis


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