Politics, Does it have any Religion?
| 29 Oct 2017
| Onkareshwar Pandey, Editor In Chief, NOP

Politics, does it have any religion?

By Aarti Varma

बुद्धं शरणं गच्छामि।
धर्मं शरणं गच्छामि।
संघं शरणं गच्छामि।
These are called three jewels of Buddhism. We read history which says after bloody massacre of Kalinga war, Emperor Ashoka decided to follow Bhuddism. Great Ashoka not only followed Buddhism but spread across whole Asian continent. I strongly believed that Buddhism and non-violence is synonym. Many of must have similar belief.
Until I read about mass exodus from Myanmar which is a Buddhist country. Around 4 lakh people of Rohingya’s community who are primarily Muslims were forced to leave Myanmar. These people are living an undignified life for more than seven decades.
As per historical records those were settled as labourers during British raj. After independence, Myanmar government refused to give citizenship to Rohingyas. They faced discrimination on account of colour of skin and religion. They were deprived of very basic amenities like education, sanitation, health. They lived inhuman life and when they tried to rebel against the government. Millitary of Myanmar burned their houses, killed, raped and forced them to flee in large numbers.
Basic question arise, how can a Buddhist country act like this? Is Buddhism only symbolic without its teachings and followings? May be Buddhism is only for the matter of religion and government don’t follow any teachings. Myanmar Government denied gravity of atrocities faced by Rohingayas. This inhuman act has evolved as a whirlpool and raised various questions and brought many world agencies answerable to humanity.
First, the country in which they are born don’t recognize their citizenship. Second, neighboring countries treat them illegal migrants and cannot provide them more than ”refugee camps” for certain period. Thirdly, UN agencies failed to take any step which can solve this problem permanently.
It is once again established that humanity kneeled in front of muscle power. Newly elected government of Myanmar is powerless in front of Military muscle power and general sentiments of Buddhist community against Muslim minority.
UN agencies are helping to make the lives of eight lakh people living at Bangladesh refugee camp somewhat easier but it need permanent solution. UN agencies need to take more concrete steps to convince Myanmar to provide safe return and dignified lives back to Rohingyas.
I believe making Myanmar accept Rohingyas as legitimate citizens, Buddhist religious teachings will not help but economic and social weight created by world will. So there is no religion of politics.

(Writer Aarti Verma is a Business and Marketing consultant (freelancer) and a writer having fourteen years rich experience of corporate, academics and social work. She is a matured human being with free mind and spirit. Views expressed in this article are her own.)
Photo courtesy -CNN

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