A row has erupted after the Jawaharlal Nehru University announced that it will be organizing a special webinar on ‘Leadership lessons from Ramayana’. National Students' Union of India (NSUI), a youth front of Congress party, has expressed skepticism over the webinar alleging it to be a propaganda of the Central Government and the JNU vice-chancellor.
Reacting to the resistance, former Member of Parliament Pavan Varma has called out the 'artificial and illiterate secularism' and condemned those who are opposing the webinar on Ramayana.
What is wrong in JNU having a web seminar on the Ramayana? The epic is a storehouse of wisdom. Gandhiji called it ‘the greatest book in devotional literature’. This reflex, artificial and illiterate secularism is condemnable.— Pavan K. Varma (@PavanK_Varma) April 30, 2020
The Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) has decided to offer ‘Leadership Lessons From Ramayana’ in the first week of May to help its students, faculty members and staff cope with the crisis brought about by the coronavirus outbreak. This is one of the many seminars which the university has planned to conduct for its students, faculty members and staff to cope up with the COVID-19 crisis.
In a video message, Vice-Chancellor Mamidala Jagadesh Kumar said, “Why a webinar on leadership lesson from Ramayana at JNU? Well, Mahatma Gandhi himself said that there is no one greater than Rama. (Mahatma) Gandhi emphasised that Rama taught us to uphold truth justice, equality, and equanimity even in adverse circumstances. There is a great deal to learn from Ramayana to enrich our lives, particularly, in these challenging times over a virus outbreak.”
In Harijan (1946), Mahatma Gandhi wrote: “To me Rama is the all-powerful essence whose name, inscribed in the heart, removes all suffering–mental,moral and physical”. This is over inspiration to organize the webinar on “Leadership lessons from Ramayana” at JNU on 2, 3 May, 2020. pic.twitter.com/2cuGqEpJ37— Mamidala Jagadesh Kumar (@mamidala90) April 30, 2020
About Rama, in 1946, Mahatma Gandhi said: He is one without a second. He alone is great. There is none greater than He. He is timeless, formless, stainless. Such is my Rama. He alone is my Lord and Master.” JNU organizes leadership lessons from Ramayana. All from JNU are welcome. pic.twitter.com/lWAz98E7rB— Mamidala Jagadesh Kumar (@mamidala90) April 28, 2020
Mahatma Gandhi emphasized how Lord Ram taught us to uphold truth,justice,equality&equanimity even in adverse situation. When we're fighting COVID we thought there are great lessons to learn from Ramayan to strengthen ourselves. I see no reason why anybody should oppose it: JNU VC https://t.co/Na3c7nBsIn— ANI (@ANI) April 28, 2020