Religion should not be misconstrued as communalism: Badal

Patiala (Punjab), July 26 (IANS) Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Sunday said that religion should not be misconstrued as communalism and that people should refrain from indentifying gurus, saints and seers on communal lines as they belong to the entire humanity.

“Religion should not be misconstrued as communalism as religion is just a way of life aimed at ensuring overall welfare of everybody. One should profess his own religion and should not hate the religion of others.

“Punjab had suffered in the past as some people had divided the people on religious lines, which must be avoided,” Badal said while addressing a gathering here after installing Bhagwan Parshuram Chair for Indian literature and culture at Punjabi University here, 80 km from Chandigarh.

He claimed “some forces inimical to the progress of the state” were bent on disrupting its hard earned peace but asserted that he would not not allow such forces to succeed “till my last breath.”

The chief minister said that Punjab had suffered a lot due to “such conspiracies in the past”, but now the Shiromani Akali Dal-BJP alliance government was “keeping a strict vigil on the nefarious designs of all those people who were vary to the peace and progress of the state”.

“For their vested interests some people are actively working to bring black days back in the state but I assure you that they will not succeed till I am alive,” Badal added.

“People should refrain from indentifying gurus, saints and seers on communal lines as they belong to the entire humanity. The Punjab government has been following the footsteps of great Sikh gurus to carve an egalitarian and secular society by observing days related with every community at state level functions,” he said.

“Unlike my predecessors who behaved like monarchs by maintaining a distance from the masses, I am always available to the people to serve them,” Badal said.

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