2011-12-28 17:10:00

Tomsk court didn't find "Bhagavad Gita" translation extremist

Tomsk, December 28, Interfax - The Tomsk Leninsky District Court on Wednesday declined the lawsuit filed by the Tomsk region's prosecutors alleging that the translation of an ancient Hindu poem "Bhagavad Gita As It Is", and comments thereto, is extremist, an Interfax correspondent has reported from the courtroom.

"It's wonderful news. I learned about the Tomsk court decision from Indian Ambassador to Russia Ajai Malhotra, who had followed the trial," Ajai Bisaria, director of the Eurasian Department of the Indian Foreign Ministry, told Interfax.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said earlier that "as evident from the materials available, the admonitions of the law enforcement authorities are not so much about the text of the book proper, whose double translation is not without the sin of semantic distortion, as about the author's comments which were classified as falling under Article 13 of the Russian Federation Federal Law 'On countering extremist activities'."

Director of the Human Rights Center of the World Russian People's Council and religious expert Roman Silantyev pointed out that Russian scientists had accurately examined Prabhupada's interpretations of Bhagavad-Gita and "all who wish can get acquainted with their conclusions saying that it has nothing to do with traditional Hinduism."

Besides, Silantyev said that Krishnaites in Russia have "extremely nasty reputation" and authoritative scientists characterize them as sectarians. He reminded that leaders of Russia's Interreligious Council concluded in 2004 that Krishnaites were marginal pseudo-Hinduist sect and spoke against realizing programs of distributing their sacrificial food in places where Orthodox, Muslim, Jews and Buddhist believers live.