Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) [India], December 11 (ANI): Describing the significant role of the temples in Indian society, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Sunday said the "wheel of history is turning" in a rising India, in which rich heritage and culture of the country will not be neglected.
He made these remarks while delivering an address on the role of temples in Indian society during his visit to Varanasi.
"We must realize today, that the wheel of history is turning. It is coming back. There is a rise of India. That era, there was a neglect of the temple, an era when things were averse to us that era is behind us," he stated.
Jaishankar said that temples are not just places for faith and worship but are social community centers. "They are places for gathering and centers for knowledge. They are promotors of art and craft."He explained that most of the temples are keepers of Indian heritage. "They are our way of life. We will not be who we are without the temples."On the importance of the temples in the contemporary world, he said, "we have to worry about globalization. ...People are understanding that there are different societies, different people, and different faiths. Each faith has to have its place in the world."Highlighting the need to spread the Indian culture, Jaishankar said, to deal with the competitive advancement of other beliefs, India will have to promote, present and take its culture to the rest of the world.
"It is not enough to hold our own, we have to promote, we have to present and we have to take our culture to the rest of the world. So everything that you are doing at home, we have to find a way that this message also goes around the rest of the world," he said.
Referring to his recent address about political and economic rebalancing, the external affairs minister said that rebalancing will only happen if there is cultural rebalancing.
"Our faith, our beliefs, and our culture must get recognition and its due place in the world. That is our commitment to you," he said.
Stating that the civilization of the country is gone beyond India, Jaishankar said Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government has worked in the direction of restoring Indian temples in Cambodia and other countries.
"Today, when we are rebuilding, restoring and reenergizing Indian civilization, our task is not only in India but all over the world," he said.
He also informed that after the Modi government came, the Indian Foreign Ministry, created a separate division to look after the restoration, renovation and support, of our cultural heritage. (ANI)