Puri Shankaracharya asks fellow 'saints' to shun politics, stick to spiritual pursuits

Last Updated: Thu, Nov 17, 2011 06:40 hrs

Taking a jibe at yoga guru Baba Ramdev and spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Puri Shankaracharya Adhokshajanand Dev, has said that people who proclaim themselves to be ascetics must live an austere life.

He said that if ascetics harboured political ambitions they must shed their saffron clothing.

"I believe that it is amusing when some people who have come in the garb of ascetics, who are corrupt and have amassed billions of rupees in illicit funds, talk about fighting against corruption. Firstly, ascetics must not enter politics. They must spread religious knowledge, live a life of sacrifice and must give spiritual messages to people. Those who have an interest in politics should give up their saffron clothing," he told media here.

He further said that the billions of rupees amassed by the saint must be confiscated as the first fruits of the fight against graft.

"I believe that the huge monetary collections made in the name of religion must be seized as illicit funds and used in public interest, after which this cleanup mission can spread further. It must start from religion, because religion is the greatest achievement of purity," he said. (ANI)

More from Sify: