New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Sheila
Dikshit on Saturday stressed the importance of reviving the
teachings of Lord Mahavir, particularly on protection of
environment, the degradation of which has emerged as a major
concern in today`s world.
Addressing a gathering of the Jain community on the
occasion of Mahavir Jayanti, Dikshit also commended the
community for initiating a role in promoting austerity and
simplicity at weddings and in combating the evil of female
"In the history of the world, Lord Mahavir was perhaps
the first religious figure to raise concerns on environment
and advocate the practices of conserving it... Hence, in
today`s reality if any such figure is the most inspiring it is
Mahavir," she said.
Dikshit said while his teachings on non-violence,
peace and humanity are known to all people, it is noteworthy
that he also advocated environment conservation, an issue that
is central in today`s world.
The assembled members of the Jain community raised the
issue of non-compliance in many areas of the government`s
orders of keeping butcher shops closed on Mahavir Jayanti, and
also asked the Chief Minister to ensure that the day is
observed as a gazetted holiday in both government and
Their pledge to hold austere weddings was commended by
the Chief Minister, who said the extravagance and show-off
should be done away with.
"We had also initiated this measure in the Assembly. I
This show-off (at weddings) does not have a good impact on
society. The initiative by the Jain community, I hope, will be
emulated by others as well. In fact, the community was also
the first to take conscious steps against female foeticide,"
Senior Congress leader Motilal Vora also said that
revisiting and spreading the message of Mahavir was the "need
of the hour".