After releasing list of fake sadhus and saints, the All-India Akahara Parishad has now tightened noose around self-styled Shankaracharays in the country by putting a ban on the use of the coveted title ‘Shankaracharya’ by them.
The Akhara Parishad Chairman Mahendra Giri in Allahabad said that barring religious heads of four established ‘Peeths’ of Hindu Sanatan Dharam, no other Hindu Dharam Guru would be allowed to use the coveted title ‘Shankaracharya’ before their names.
Before the beginning of the Kumbh Mela inAllahabad in January next year, Mahant Giri has submitted the names of four Sankaracharyas of Puri, Dwarka, Shringeri and Jytish Peeths and sought intervention of the state government in initiating action against those using the coveted title before their names.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has accepted Akahara Parishad requested and has directed Kumbh Mela authorities not to allow any self-styled religious head, other than the four Peeths, to put any board with the title Shankaracharya before their names during the Kumbh.
As per the Kumbh tradition, the state government honours Shankaracharyas and extends special guest facility to them at the Mela ground during Kumbh and Mahakumbh. There are over two dozen self-styled religious heads, who have formed their own Peeths and using the title Shankaracharyas before their names.
There is even a rift among many self-styled claimants to the coveted post of Shankaracharyas of Dwarka, Puri and Jytosh Peeths and they all are using the same title.
Mahant Giri said that the step was taken by the Akhara Parshad to keep at bay self-styled Shankaracharyas who are causing disrepute to the Hindu Sanatan dharma. “They are welcome to participate at the Kumbh but they will not be allowed to misuse the coveted title given only to the religious heads of four established Peeths in the country,” he warned.
To keep an eye on the activities of such self-styled religious heads, the Akhara Parishad has formed a team of 500 Naga Sadhus who will be on round the clock duty to implement the decision and maintain peace and religious harmony when Kumbh begins in Allahabad in January 2019.