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Muzrai priests need to pass exam

Muzrai priests need to pass exam

Author: Times News Network
Publication: The Times of India
Date: May 12, 2002
URL: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow.asp?art_id=9695932

Muzrai temple priests in Karnataka have to now qualify by passing an examination in aagama shastra (chanting of mantras and pooja rituals). This is according to the new rules drafted by the Muzrai officials under the Hindu Religious and Charitable Trust Act of 1997 which received presidential assent in December.

Muzrai Minister Suma Vasanth told The Times of India that the draft rules have been referred to the law department and the opinion of the association of archakas (priests) is also being sought.

Priests are required to undergo an orientation course in pravara (chanting of mantras) conducted by any private Veda pathashala and obtain a certificate. ``However, those who have crossed 40 years of age are exempted from these rules,'' she added.

Asked what prompted the department to come out with such a rule now, Vasanth said aagama praveenas in Muzrai department noticed some discrepancies on the part of some priests in a few temples in chanting of mantras. ``An ordinary person who comes to the temple may not be aware of the nuances of the mantras. It is not fair to take them for granted,'' Vasanth explained.

Muzrai department has three aagama praveenas each in Shaivagama, Pancharatra and Vykhana type of pooja rituals. They are selected by the Karnataka Public Service Commission (KPSC).

Akhila Bharata Hindu Temples Archaka, Aagamika and Upadivantara Federation general secretary K.S.N. Dikshit has welcomed the move.

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