Greetings (Namaskar)! My regards to the Saheb. I consider myself fortunate today that I got the opportunity to attend this program organised to pay respects to the great Sufi poet Sant Kabir Das Ji. I bow down to this holy land.
Popular and well known Chief Minister, Shriman Yogi Adityanath Ji; my colleague in the Union Council of Ministers Shriman Mahesh Sharma Ji; my colleague in the Union Council of Ministers Shriman Shiv Pratap Shukla Ji; Minister in the state government Dr. Rita Bahuguna Ji; Minister in the state government Shriman Lakshmi Narayan Chaudhari Ji; my colleague in the Parliament and President of Bhartiya Janta Party in Uttar Pradesh my friend Dr. Mahendra Nath Pandey Ji; a young, courageous, active colleague in the Parliament who is also a son of the soil Shriman Sharat Tripathi Ji; Chief Secretary of Uttar Pradesh Shriman Rajiv Kumar; other dignitaries present here and my dear brothers and sisters from all over the country who are present here today,
I have a feeling of gratification as I visit this sacred land of Maghar,.
Brothers and sisters,
Everyone has a desire to visit pilgrim centres. That desire of mine has been fulfilled today. Just a while ago, I got the opportunity to offer flowers to the shrine of Sant Kabir Das Ji, I got the opportunity to offer a chador on his shrine. I also saw the cave where Kabir Das Ji used to meditate. He was providing direction to the society for centuries, a torch-bearer, an epitome of equality and religious harmony, I bow down to Mahatma Kabir on this land of his salvation. It is being said that Sant Kabir, Guru Nanak Dev and Baba Gorakhnath Ji have together discussed spiritual issues while sitting at this place. I feel a kind of fulfillment by visiting Maghar. Today is Jyeshth Shukla Purnima. Also, the Yatra of Bhagwan Bholenath (Lord Shiva) is beginning from today. I convey my best wishes to the pilgrims for a happy yatra.
An yearlong festival - Kabir Mahotsav – has begun here on the occasion of the fifth death centenary of Kabir Das Ji. He has left an excellent legacy behind for the mankind and we all are going to benefit from it. Sant Kabir Ji said :
‘Teerth Gaye To Ek Fal, Sant Mile Fal Char.
Sadguru Mile Anek Fal, Kahe Kabir Vichar.’
It means that a person gets one holy reward by going on a pilgrimage but his reward becomes four fold if he is in the company of a saint.
This Kabir Festival on the land of Maghar is going to give us such holy reward.
Brothers and sisters,
The foundation stone for the Sant Kabir Academy has been laid here just a while ago. The institutions for preserving the legacy of Mahatma Kabir will be built here by spending nearly Rs. 24 crore. The social awakening for which Kabir worked throughout his life, there is a plan to develop all these things: a training house for Kabir’s singings, Kabir dance training house, a research center, a library, an auditorium, a hostel and an art gallery. Sant Kabir Academy will also work for the preservation and development of regional languages and popular arts of Uttar Pradesh.
Brothers and sisters,
The entire life of Kabir was spent in the quest to find the truth and countering the falsehood. Kabir emphasised not on belief, but on knowing. He was a free spirit, pennyless and austere ; he was like a servant before the servants of God but very courageous in front of emperors. A person with clean heart and sound mind, he was soft inside though appeared tough outside. He became worthy of worship because of his deeds and not because of the occupation of the family he was born into.
The great saint had risen from the dust but he became the tilak applied on the forehead. Mahatma Kabir Das became a seeker of the ultimate truth. He represented an idea that immortalised him . Not only did he give vision to the society but he also awakened its spirit. He came to Maghar from Kashi for this social awakening. He selected Maghar as a symbol. Kabir Saheb had said if someone has the Lord Ram in his heart then for him Maghar is the most sacred place. And he said:
Kya Kasi Kya Usar Maghar, Ram Hriday Baso Mora.
He came from Kashi and was initiated by Ramanand. Saint Kabirdas Ji used to say:
Hum Kashi Mein Prakat Bhaye Hain, Ramanand Chetaye.
Brothers and sisters,
Kabir can be called the song, flavor and essence of India’s soul. He had expressed the inner feelings of the common Indian. He was a disciple of Guru Ramanand so how could he believe in the caste system. He broke down the barriers of caste based discrimination and declared that the entire mankind was one. And he paved the way for realisation of God present in every soul by demolishing one’s own ego. He belonged to everyone and that is why everyone belonged him. He said:
Kabira Khada Bazar Mein, Mange Sabki Khair
Na Kahu Se Dosti, Na Kahu Se Bair.
No dictionary is required to understand his couplets. He explained the most complex mysteries of life to the ordinary people in their language with the simplicity and ease. He said: Please look inwards to discover Lord Ram present in you, Lord Hari is present in your conscience, why do you waste your time in the external rituals. Reform yourself and you will find the Lord.
Jab Main Tha Tab Hari Nahin, Jab Hari Hai, Main Nahi.
Sab Andhiyara Mit Gaya, Deepak Dekha Mahi.
‘I could not see the Lord as long as I was driven by ego but when the Lord came I vanished. The darkness of ignorance was gone and I saw the light.’
This is the virtue, this is the holiness in our great land that from time to time sages, wise people, godmen and saints have shown the right path to eradicate the internal vices of the society that creep up with the passage of time. It was only due to the influence of those great souls and saints that the soul of the nation, the equality and harmony in the country survived during the hundreds of years of long period of slavery.
In order to show the right path to the society, Lord Buddha was born, and a whole lot of saints such as Lord Mahavir was born, Sant Kabir, Sant Soordas and Guru Nanak continued to show us the right way. Whether it is north or south, be it east or west, in every region of the country such great souls preserved the country’s spirit and protected it from being tarnished by evil traditions.
In south, Madhavacharya, Nimbagaracharya, Vallabhacharya, Saint Basaveshwar, Saint Tirugal, Saint Tiruvalluvar and Ramanujacharya. When we look at western India we find Maharshi Dayanand, Mira Bai, Saint Eknath, Saint Tukaram, Saint Ramdas, Saint Gyaneshwar, Narsi Mehta; if we look at north we find Ramanand, Kabirdas, Goswami Tulsidas, Soordas, Guru Nanak Dev, Saint Ruidas, and when we look at east we find Sri Ramkrishna Paramhans, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and the saints like Acharya Shankar Dev who blazened the society’s path. It was the teachings of these great souls that helped India to overcome hurdles and move ahead. Instead of discrimination in the name of skin and occupation, the path of devotion to the Lord which was shown by Ramanujacharya, following that path Saint Ramanand has struck a blow on the caste system by accepting people from all the castes and sects as his disciples. Sant Ramanand showed Sant Kabir the path of Lord Ram. And Kabir has been asking generations after generations of people to follow the path of Lord Ram.
Brothers and sisters,
Ruidas came long after Sant Kabir. A few centuries later came Mahatma Phule, Mahatma Gandhi and Baba Saheb Bhimrao Ambedkar. All of them showed the path to end inequality in the society.
Baba Saheb gave us the Constitution of the country. He gave us equal status as a citizen. Unfortunately, today an attempt is made to create a platform for vested political interests in the name of these great souls who have been trying to divide the society. Some political parties don’t want peace and development in the society, they want discord, they want chaos. They feel that the more they create the environment of dissatisfaction and chaos, the more political benefit they will get. However, this is also true that these people are far away from the ground realities. They don’t have any idea that what is the fundamental character of our country that follows Sant Kabir, Mahatma Gandhi and Baba Saheb.
Kabir used to say: look inward and you will find the truth. However, these people have never read Kabir seriously. Sant Kabirdas Ji used to say:
Pothi Padhi-Padhi Jag Mua, Pandit Bhaya Na Koy.
Dhai Akhar Prem Ka Padeh So Pandit Hoy.
If one orients his mind towards public, towards country, towards society and its development then one will find the ultimate goal – development, the Lord in the form of development. However, they are inclined towards a grand bungalow. I remember what was the attitude of the previous government of this state when Prime Minister’s Awas Yojana was started to provide the houses to the poor and middle class.
Our government wrote to them letters after letters, several times we called them over phone so that the previous government could come forward, it should have informed about the minimum number of houses to be constructed for the poor people. But it was the government which was interested in their bungalows. They did not do anything. And since the time Yogi Ji has formed the government, a record number of houses for poor are being constructed in the house.
Throughout his entire life Kabir followed his principles. These were not the worldly principles. He followed the principles devised by him and understood by him. And this was the reason for coming to Maghar. He was not fascinated by the ultimate salvation. However, today we see it very well, the hunger for power of those people who talk about socialism, who talk about masses, who give false assurance to the poor people.
Just two days ago we have completed 43 years of emergency in our country. The greed for power is so much that the people who had imposed emergency at that time and those who opposed it then are today walking together shoulder to shoulder to grab the power. They are not concerned about the country or society, they are concerned only and only about their own interest and the interest of their families. These people are those who build bungalows worth crores of rupees for themselves by betraying the poor, dalits, backwards, deprived and exploited people. They are going to amass property worth crores and crores of rupees for their brothers and relatives. People of the country and the people of Uttar Pradesh must be beware of these people.
Friends, you have seen their attitude towards triple talaq. Throughout the country the sisters of Muslim society have been consistently raising the demand for abolishing the triple talaq to get rid of this evil custom. However, these political parties, these people who play the vote bank politics to grab the power, have been putting hurdles in the passage of triple talaq bill in the Parliament. They want to keep the society permanently week to serve their own interest. They don’t want to see it free from its vices.
When Kabir was born, at that time India was under a massive attack. The common man of the country was facing difficulties. Sant Kabirdas Ji had challenged the then emperor. And the challenge of Kabirdas Ji was:
Dar Ki Bat Kaho Darvesa Badshah Hai Kaun Bhesa.
Kabir had said that the ideal ruler is he who understands the plight of the people and tries to alleviate that. King Ram was an ideal ruler. His dream state was democratic and neutral to sects. Alas ! Today, there are several families who consider themselves as the master of destiny of public and they are busy in completely rejecting the teachings of Sant Kabir Das Ji. They have forgotten that the basis of our struggle and our ideals are great souls like Kabir.
Kabir dealt a blow to the dogmas. He challenged the system that discriminated among people. Kabir wanted to empower those who were oppressed, who were deprived and exploited. He did not want to see them as beggar.
Sant Kabir used to say:
Mangan Maran Saman Hai, Mat Koi Mango Bheekh;
Mangan Te Marna Bhala, Yeh Satguru Ki Seekh.
Kabir himself relied on his labour for livelihood. He understood the importance of labour. However, our policy makers never understood this philosophy of Kabir even so many years after the independence they continued to made the poor dependent on the politics of vote bank in the name of eradication of poverty.
Friends, we have made every effort in the last four years to change that policy and approach. Our government has been following the path of empowering the poor, dalit, persecuted, exploited, deprived, women and youth. We have done the job of empowering people by opening more than 5 crore bank accounts of poor people in Uttar Pradesh under the Jan Dhan scheme; by giving free gas connections to more than 80 lakh women under the Ujjwala scheme; by providing the insurance shield to 1.7 crore poor people at a premium of one rupee per month and 90 paise per day; by constructing more than 1.25 crore toilets in the villages of UP; and by transferring the money directly into the bank accounts of people. We have taken upon ourselves to provide an affordable, easy and best health care service to our poor families under the Ayushman Bharat Yojana. The government has made these things priority for itself: Self respect for poor people and making the lives of poor people easier.
Friends, Kabir respected labour, he was a doer. Kabir said:
Kal Kare So Aaj Kar.
Kabir believed in doing the work, he believed in his Lord Ram. Today, the schemes that are being completed at fast speed, the roads that are constructed twice as fast, new highways; electrification of railway lines that is taking place at twice the speed, the airports that are being constructed at fast speed; the houses that are being built at more than twice the speed; the optical fiber network which is being laid to every village body; the speed of all these works is just a reflection of the path followed by Kabir. This is as per the spirit of our government – Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas.
As Maghar was considered wasteland and cursed during the time of Kabir similarly even so many years after the independence fruits of development reached only some parts of the country and a large part of the country is still feeling aliented. Starting from eastern Uttar Pradesh, Northern India, North-East India was starved of development. The way Kabir shook off the curse of Maghar similarly it is the effort of our government that development must reach every single inch of Indian land.
Brothers and sisters,
The entire world recognizes Maghar as the place of final salvation of Sant Kabir. However, even so many years after the independence the condition of this place was not like what it was supposed to be. When farmer President Abdul Kalam had visited this place 14-15 years ago he had a dream for this place. We are going to develop Maghar at a fast speed as a centre of goodwill and harmony on the international map to realise his dreams.
The government has taken upon itself the task of development of places like Maghar as the centres of faith and spirituality under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme. Whether it is Ramayan circuit or Bauddha circuit or Sufi circuit, different places are being developed by developing circuits like these.
The teachings of Kabir are a very important and an easy medium for protection of humanity, for universal brotherhood and for mutual love. His messages are so filled with the feeling of equality of all the religions and social harmony that they are like a source of light for us even today.
What is required is that his message should be communicated to everyone and we should follow it in our conduct. I hope that Kabir academy will play an important role in this thing. Once again I express my gratitude to the devotees who have come to this holy land of saint Kabir from outside. We would be able to realise the dream of a New India by truly following the immortal message of Sant Kabir in our lives. With this hope, I conclude my speech. Thank you very much to all of you.
Saheb Bandgi, Saheb Bandgi, Saheb Bandgi.
(I bow down to the great soul, I bow down to him, I bow down to him).