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Karna cabinet meet to discuss Lingayat religion tag deferred

Press Trust of India  |  Bengaluru 

The cabinet meeting that was to discuss today the contentious issue of considering Lingayat/Veerashaiva as a separate religion has been postponed, officials said.

Officials at the confirmed the postponement, but did not cite any reason for it.

The cabinet on March 8 had discussed the issue inconclusively, amidst reports of differences between Ministers belonging to both Veerashaiva and Lingayat faiths.

Rejecting suggestions that were factions within the cabinet on it, had yesterday said "we will discuss tomorrow (in the cabinet meeting)."

The demand for a separate religion tag to Veerashaiva/ Lingayat faiths has surfaced from the numerically strong and politically-influential community, amidst resentment from within over projecting the two communities as the same.

While one section led by Mahasabha has demanded separate religion status, asserting that Veerashaiva and Lingayats are the same,the other wants it only for Lingayats as it believes that Veerashaivasare one among the seven sects of Shaivas, which is part ofHinduism.

Of late, some Lingayats have also stated that they were open to having the Veerashaivas under their umbrella, but the Lingayat nomenclature was non-negotiable.

State Minorities Commission had formed a seven-member committee, headed by retired Judge H NNagamohan Das on the issue, which submitted its report on March 2 stating that "Lingayats in may be consideredas religious minority."

The Lingayat/Veerashaiva community that owesallegiance to the 12th century "social reform movement" initiated by Basaveshwara has a substantial population in Karnataka, especially in the northern parts of the state.

The BJP and several sections of community have maintained a cautious stance, keeping away from the move to give Veerashaiva/Lingayat separate religion status.

They have accused the government of dividing society to draw political mileage ahead of the assembly elections, due in April/May.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, March 14 2018. 16:50 IST