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INTRODUCTION Meera, also known as Meera Bai, was a 16th-century Hindu mystic poet and devotee of Krishna. She is a celebrated Bhakti saint, particularly in…
Swami Ramdev, popularly known as Baba Ramdev was born in 1965 in Alipur in the Mahendragarh district in the Indian state of Haryana. Ramdev is an Indian, Hindu swami and is particularly well known for his efforts to popularize yoga. His yoga camps see a large attendance of his followers. The Baba is also one of the founders of the “Divya Yoga Mandir Trust” that aims at promoting yoga among the masses.
Born as Ramkishen Yadav he attended school till grade eight in Shahjadpur in Harayana and then joined a gurukul in Khanpur village to study yoga and Sanskrit. Ultimately he renounced worldly life and became a Sanyasi (took to monastic living) taking on his present name. He later travelled to the Jind district and joined the Kalva gurukul and offered free yoga training to villagers across Harayana.
Baba Ramdev spent many years of his life studying ancient Indian scriptures and practicing meditation and self discipline all along. He has also founded the Patanjali Yogpeeth Trust in Haridwar, an institution that does research in the healing powers of yoga and Ayurveda. The trust also provides many free services to all its visitors.
channels like Zee Network, Sahara One and India TV; and the swami holds many yoga camps across the country and even abroad. In 2007 the KIIT University (Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology) awarded the swami with an honorary doctorate degree for his contribution towards popularizing the Vedic science of yoga.
Baba Ramdev, born Ramkrishna Yadav, is a yoga guru known for his work in ayurveda, business, politics and agriculture. He founded the Patanjali Group of Institutions and has shown interest in political issues. Ramdev claims that he became paralyzed when he was two & half and was later cured via practicing Yoga. He studied Indian scripture, Yoga and Sanskrit in various Gurukuls (schools). He was the student of Acharya Baldevji in Gurukul Kalwa. Ramdev took sanyasi diksha and adopted the name Swami Ramdev from Swami ShankarDev Ji. Ramdev founded the Divya Yog Mandir Trust in 1995. In 2003, Aastha TV began featuring him in its morning yoga slot. He is also the founder of – Patanjali Yogpeeth, Patanjali Ayurved and Bharat Swabhiman Trust.
Ramdev founded the Divya Yog Mandir Trust in 1995. In 2003, Aastha TV began featuring him in its morning yoga slot. There he proved to be telegenic and gained a large following. A large number of people, celebrities from India & abroad attended his Yoga camps. He taught yoga to many celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan, Shilpa Shetty and in foreign countries including Britain, the US & Japan. He also addressed Muslim clerics at their seminary in Deoband, Uttar Pradesh. In 2006, he was invited by Kofi Annan to deliver a lecture on poverty alleviation at a United Nations conference. Yogi Haider considered the face of yoga in Pakistan, says that his ambition is to popularize yoga like Ramdev Baba did in India.
Patanjali Yogpeeth is an institute founded for the promotion and practice of Yoga and Ayurveda. It has two Indian campuses, Patanjali Yogpeeth I and Patanjali Yogpeeth II in Haridwar, Uttarakhand. And part from India other locations include UK, US, Nepal, Canada and Mauritius.
Ramdev established the Patanjali Yog Peeth (UK) Trust in 2006, with the aim of promoting yoga in the UK. To extend PatanjaliYogpeeth, he also acquired the Scottish island of Little Cumbrae.
Patanjali Ayurved is a consumer packaged goods company, based in Haridwar, that was started by Ramdev and Acharya Balkrishna in 2006. According to a company official, sales in early March 2016 were 45 billion (US$700 million) with monthly sales of 5 billion (US$78 million)–5.5 billion (US$86 million). According to a report by India Infoline (IIFL), at least 13 listed companies would be affected by Patanjali’s success including Colgate, Dabur, ITC and Godrej Consumer.
In 2015, the Maharashtra government announced plans to sell excessive material from its Van Dhan Jan Dhan scheme to Patanjali. The government set up this scheme to sell medicinal and herbal products, derived from the forests of Maharashtra, to the consumer in government-established shops. Forest Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar stated that its plan to sell wholesale to Patanjali is an effort to increase production from the Van Dhan Jan Dhan scheme. Members of the opposition party have stated that the forest products are a national asset, and plans to sell them to Patanjali is a form of favoritism.
In 2010, Ramdev announced plans to form a political party called Bharat Swabhiman (India Pride). He said that it would contest every seat in the next national elections. A year later, he stated that, instead of forming a political party, he would influence politics by encouraging a groundswell of popular reaction. In 2014, Ramdev announced that Bharat Swabhiman intended to contest some constituencies in the general election of that year and to form alliances with some other parties. It was at this time that he voiced his support for Narendra Modi to become the next Prime Minister of India. His attempts to run yoga camps during that election campaign, allegedly to gain support for Modi, were stymied by the Election Commission of India (ECI) who determined that they were politically motivated. The ECI had also tried to control his use of camps in the Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh state elections of 2013.
Ramdev founded an organisation called the Bharat Swabhiman Trust in 2009, in part, to support his political activities. The financial arrangements of this and his two other trusts, the Divya Yog and Patanjali Yogpeeth, came under ECI scrutiny during the 2014 elections because of a complaint that they were being used to fund the campaigns of some political parties.
In December 2006 the press reported that Swami Ramdev had claimed that he had found a way to use yoga to cure AIDS. As a result of these press reports the Indian Union Health Ministry sent him a cease and desist order and threatened legal action if he did not stop making these false claims. Other claims of the Baba include being able to cure cancer of the liver, breast, prostrate, uterus and brain (including brain tumours) by practising seven breathing exercises; Ramdev allegedly has documentary evidence for the same.
Baba Ramdev preaches that God resides in every human being and that the body is a temple of God. The swami believes in Vasudaiv Kutambakam (the whole World is one family) and does not support discrimination on the basis of caste, creed and religion. One of the most essential beliefs of Baba Ramdev is that showing true love and compassion towards all living things is true worship.
The Swami has taught many elements of the Indian scriptures such as the Ashtadhyayee, Mahabhashya and Upanishads and has set up many gurukuls in Ghashera, Kishangarh, and Mahendragarh in India. The yoga guru also teaches “Pranayama”; which is series of breathing exercises that were a part of the ancient Indian system of yoga. The Baba’s educational show is broadcast on TV with a total viewer ship of millions. People who watch his TV show’s have given examples of how they have been cured from diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, arthritis, stomach ailments, thyroid problems, heart diseases and cancer after practising yoga and breathing exercises prescribed by the Baba.
Swami Ramdev has even claimed that he was paralytic before he took up yoga, and since has been completely cured. This claim has yet to be verified. Baba Ramdev has been conducting Yoga Science camps all across the country and abroad and even spent a month in London teaching Pranayama and Yoga.
In April 2011, Ramdev called on the government to add punitive powers to the Jan Lokpal Bill, a bill to appoint an independent body that would investigate alleged government corruption. Ramdev announced he would go on an anshan (hunger-strike) at Ramilla Ground in Delhi, on 4 June 2011, to pressure the government into rooting out corruption and repatriating black money.] A week before the scheduled fast, the government set up a committee, headed by the chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes, to suggest steps to curb black money and its transfer abroad.
When Ramdev arrived at Delhi airport on 1 June, four government ministers met him and tried to persuade him to call off his fast by telling him of the government’s initiative on corruption. Talks continued between the two sides and, on 3 June, both sides claimed that a consensus had been reached. However, in the evening, Ramdev announced that he would carry on with his hunger strike.
On the morning of 4 June, 65,000 of his followers gathered at Ramlila Ground. By noon, queues extending up to 3 km (1.9 mi) were chanting Vande Mataram (a patriotic call from the Indian independence movement). In the evening, government minister Kapil Sibbal publicized a letter from Ramdev’s camp stating that the hunger strike would be called off if the government honoured its commitments. Ramdev took it as a betrayal by the government and hardened his position.
Shortly before midnight, a Delhi police spokesman announced that permission for the gathering had been cancelled because it was “for a yoga camp for 5,000, not for 50,000 people for agitation”.At midnight, a team of 10,000 Delhi policemen and RAF raided the ground when most of the protesters were sleeping. Tear gas shells and a lathicharge were used, tents were set on fire, and water was thrown over power generators to create complete darkness. Ramdev tried to escape capture by disguising himself as an injured woman but was arrested two hours later. He was flown back to his ashram in Haridwar and banned from entering Delhi for 15 days. On reaching Haridwar, Ramdev told reporters, “My fast is not over yet and I will continue with my satyagraha (civil resistance).”
Police reported that 53 citizens and ten police were injured and treated in hospitals. There were accusations that women protestors had been badly treated by the police. A senior police officer stated that they were forced to retaliate after Ramdev’s supporters started throwing stones and flower pots at them. Police also released CCTV footage to prove that no women were beaten by them. One female protestor suffered a spinal injury and, later, died in hospital from cardiac arrest. In a statement, Ramdev said “Her sacrifice is an irreparable loss to the whole organisation … and her death will not go in vain. We will continue to fight for a corruption-free India.”
In March 2005, 113 employees of Divya Yoga Mandir Trust began an agitation for minimum wages and employees’s rights such as coverage under the Provident Fund and Employees’ State Insurance schemes. A meeting resulted in an agreement between the workers, management and the district administration; management agreed to pay minimum wage and not to initiate disciplinary actions against the protestors and, in turn, the workers agreed that they would restore normalcy at the workplace. However, the Trust refused to take back some of the workers, accusing them of committing sabotage. Their case was taken up by the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), affiliated with the Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPM).
Brinda Karat, a senior figure in the CPM, took up the cause of the fired protesters. They told her that human bones and animal parts were used in some herbal medicines manufactured by Divya Pharmacy (owned by Divya Yog Mandir Trust) and provided samples. The samples were tested at government laboratories and the presence of animal materials in the sample was confirmed. However, the source of the samples was disputed, since they had been given to Karat by the protesting workers and not procured by government officials. Karat produced what were claimed to be the prescription and cash receipt obtained from the hospital’s medicine counter for the samples provided. Her remarks drew strong condemnation from several politicians in North India, such as Sharad Pawar, Mulayam Singh Yadav and Narayan Dutt Tiwari. Subsequently, she received a legal notice on the behalf of a BJP leader in Faridabad ordering her to apologize publicly or face legal action.
Credit – indiatimes
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