Udaipur : Activists and animal lovers in the temple town of Nathdwara have launched a drive to make the place an all-vegetarian and alcohol free zone. Residents under the flagship of ‘Sharabmukt Ho Nathdwara Sangharsh Samiti’ are actively participating in a movement aiming to get a ban on sale of liquor and meat within the five kilometers periphery of the temple town. Shrinathji’s 17th century temple here in Nathdwara is one of the most important centers of worship for the followers of the Vaishnavite cult and attracts lakhs of tourists around the year from far and wide. On Holi, Diwali and Janmashtami devotees specially from Gujarat and other parts of the country throng in large number and the place is overcrowded.
” Nathdwara is the ‘gate of lord’ and associated with Krishna. This is God’s land where lakhs of devotees come for darshan and blessing of God. We really want this place to be free of all kind of animal slaughter and liquor consumption which are not considered ethical as per Hindu religion” says Rekha Sharma, a resident. Women folk are the active participant in the drive who had met success during April this year against opening of a liquor outlet in the residential area at Shrinath colony falling under ward 23 of the town. Large number of women in the area had sat on a dharna for over six weeks, held Bhajans and Keertans finally forcing the excise authorities to change the location of the liquor sale outlet.
” It was the women power at Kachhbali and Mandawar that made their areas liquor free and now we too are determined to make our place a complete vegetarian and alcohol free town” Bhavna Paliwal, another activist said. ” ” You wont find shops selling meat or restaurants serving non vegetarian food within the precints of Tirupati or even Palitana in Gujarat. It would be really good if such a pious atmosphere sets in our city too where devotees can feel the spiritual ecstasy and get blessings of Lord Krishna” Dharmesh Jain, a senior lawyer said. Komal Paliwal, co-ordinator of the samiti said the movement is gaining pace gradually with residents extending their support and cooperation. The Samiti plans to approach legislature CP Joshi to represent the resident’s demand before the state government for a consideration in the state budget and new excise policy.