Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday called for popularising scientific temper in the country as he lamented that despite being the first nation to touch the south pole of the Moon, many parts of India were still under the hold of superstitious beliefs and rituals.
Vijayan, after inaugurating a meeting at Chempazhanthy here on the occasion of saint reformer Sree Narayana Guru's 169th birth anniversary, questioned why despite the advances in science and technology, the country was unable to create scientific awareness among people.
"Even as India became the first country to touch the south pole of the Moon, human sacrifices and violence on the basis of superstitions were taking place in many parts of the country.
"Why is it that even as we progress in the field of science and technology, we are unable to create scientific awareness? We need to evaluate that," he said.
The CM also said that unscientific blunders were replacing theories of evolution in textbooks.
Wars, disasters and riots were taking place in many parts of the world and India too was seeing people killing each other on the basis of racial, caste or religious differences.
Citing the ongoing violence in Manipur and Haryana, he said the division among people and the hatred that were being seen in those two states were also witnessed recently in the classroom of a school in Uttar Pradesh.
Vijayan was referring to the recent incident of a student belonging to a minority community being slapped by his classmates of a majority community on the instructions of their teacher.
"The fires of hatred are still burning in Manipur and Haryana and it is forcing us to bow our heads in shame before the world," he added.
The CM further said that communal forces were trying to destroy the secular fabric of the country and the unity among the people through their divisive politics and urged people to follow the teachings of spiritual leaders like Sree Narayana Guru.
Vijayan, earlier in the day in a Facebook post on the Guru's 169th birth anniversary, said the nation was passing through a time when politics of caste and religious hatred were posing a big challenge to society and therefore, it was more imperative now than ever to vigorously uphold the spiritual leader's teachings.
People should try to overcome the challenges posed by the communal forces and become a society as envisioned by the Guru by taking strength from his visions and struggles, he said.
If people can follow the Guru's message to treat each other as brothers, riots and killings can be avoided.
"So, on his birth anniversary we should pledge to spread his message of brotherhood and humanity to all corners of the world," the CM said.
He further said that the visions and messages of the Guru have not been erased by time and have only become more stronger as they benefit humanity.
The CM noted that Kerala has become what it is today due to the intervention and activities of spiritual leaders and social reformers like Sree Narayana Guru.
Vijayan also highlighted how the spiritual leader's visions urged people to question caste-based hierarchies, democratise social life, expose the exploitative system, become strong by being organised and emphasised upon the importance of knowledge.
"He realised the necessity of education for social progress."
Sree Narayana Guru had propagated the message of 'One Caste, One Religion and One God for Mankind'.
The 19th century spiritual guru and social reformer was born into a backward Ezhava family in an era when people from such communities faced social injustice in the caste-ridden society of Kerala.
-With PTI Input