A proposal seeking tax exemption for ancient mutts and temples at three important Hindu ‘teerths’ (holy places) — Kashi, Ayodhya and Mathura — has been submitted to senior RSS functionary Indresh Kumar.
Indresh will be meeting RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat in Lucknow on Sunday and was expected to take up the issue with him.
Mahant Balak Das, Head of the Patalpuri Sanatan Dharm Raksha Parishad, said : “The proposal was given by Rajiv Srivastava of Vishal Bharat Sansthan on behalf of the authorities of mutts and temples.”
The request for tax exemption was met with support from the people, owing to the fact that Hindu temples are the only places of worship in India that pay taxes every year, no matter what income they are left with. Other major religious institutions like Churches and Mosques do not pay taxes (given their minority status in terms of population) and are also well funded by their foundations in the Middle East and Europe. This disparity has led to an uproar amongst the Hindu masses, Hindu priests and Hindu temples who have to sustain off a paltry income, as most of their donations go into paying taxes. These taxes are in turn used for the welfare of every religious establishment, even churches and mosques.
He said the proposal demanded exemption of all types of taxes from the mutts and temples at Kashi, Ayodhya and Mathura. These mutts and temples do not have any regular source of income but they have been keeping alive the ancient tradition of ‘gurukul’ for ‘Vedic’ students.
“Free electricity should be supplied to the mutts and facilities like ration cards to Vedic students and mutt authorities, subsidized gas cylinders, scholarship to Vedic students and grants for the renovation of old mutts should also be ensured,” he added.