Sri Sri explains NGT cess climbdown, blames media

“I have never even paid a late exam fee in school. When I have done no wrong, I said I won’t pay a fine. But when I learnt that the media had reported it wrongly... that it was not a fine, but a cess... we paid,” Sri Sri said to an audience comprising a number of political leaders.

By: Express News Service | Delhi | Updated: March 13, 2016 2:04 am
sri sri ravi shankar, art of living, world culture festival, world culture festival new delhi, natioanl green tribunal on world culture festival The second day of the event also saw saints and community leaders, from religions around the globe, speak about world peace.

On the second day of the World Culture Festival, Art of Living (AOL) founder Sri Sri Ravi Shankar blamed the media while explaining why AOL had paid the first installment of the cess imposed by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) Friday, despite his initial refusal to pay the Rs 5 crore fine the NGT had asked for.

“I have never even paid a late exam fee in school. When I have done no wrong, I said I won’t pay a fine. But when I learnt that the media had reported it wrongly… that it was not a fine, but a cess… we paid,” Sri Sri said to an audience comprising a number of political leaders including Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, along with governors and chief ministers from several states.

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The second day of the event also saw saints and community leaders, from religions around the globe, speak about world peace. Ahmad Badreddin Hassoun, grand mufti of the Syrian Arab Republic, Reverend Gunnar Stalsett, Bishop Emeritus of Oslo, Mufti Mohammad Saeed Khan, founder of Madani Trust in Pakistan, Ram Bhadracharya, founder and head of Tulsi peeth in Mathura, were among the speakers.

While Hassoun called for “unification of the good people of all religions”, Mufti Mohammad Saeed Khan and Sri Sri raised slogans in favour of both India and Pakistan.

Congratulating Sri Sri, Swaraj said, “For three days, Guruji has converted Delhi into a vishwa nagari (global city)”.

She said she was not surprised at the scale of the event, adding, “I know Guruji can have an event of this scale, not just in Delhi, but anywhere in the world. I took him to New York during the International Yoga Day. He was nearly mobbed at Times Square amid cheers of Sri Sri,” she said.

Sisodia said the event showcased the Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the world is your family) philosophy of India. He also urged people to remember the contribution of farmers. “This event could be organised on the banks of Yamuna because farmers vacated their land… for us. I would like to remind us all that whatever we can do for this land, to help them in their work, we must do,” said Sisodia.

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  1. I
    IML sood
    Mar 13, 2016 at 4:12 am
    No doubt about it. One can well imagine how media in these days is bent upon to twist news to their pre determined agenda perhaps to create confusion and run down the present Govt. Some media houses perhaps on the bidding of their masters are playing this dirty tricks by giving false or half baked stories and no regret later when these are proved completely away from realities.Beware of them lest they are determined to pollute your minds.
    Reply
    1. M
      MyTake
      Mar 12, 2016 at 10:25 pm
      A Great and true Interfaith dialog ever!
      Reply
    2. M
      MyTake
      Mar 12, 2016 at 10:09 pm
      How many diktats NGT issued when UPA was about to bring largest of all environmental and emotional disturbances by digging canal destroying Ran Setu, if not for Dr. Swamy's timely interference? Where were this people at that time?
      Reply
    3. M
      MyTake
      Mar 12, 2016 at 10:23 pm
      When all barriers of religions are being broken by good people every where and are trying to raise themselves above it and to the level of true humanity, these people are shaken to the core! They guessed it right that they are fast loosing their grip on the unsuspecting people!
      Reply
      1. N
        Namitha
        Mar 13, 2016 at 3:48 pm
        Jab phisal parey to Har Ganga Maiyya.
        Reply
        1. N
          Namitha
          Mar 13, 2016 at 3:51 pm
          Why Art of Living program was allowed to be inaugurated by Modi.Why, why and why?
          Reply
          1. V
            Vijay
            Mar 13, 2016 at 10:58 am
            Very heart warming to see lakhs of people at the event joyfully cheer the spiritual leaders of Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, Judaism, Hinduism at the event talking of global peace and universal brotherhood! Critics shouting 'growing intolerance' please stand up.. This is real India. Time to support such forces of world peace rather than indulging in petty politics... We're not too far from moving into a world of total hatred either... Let's choose wisely.
            Reply
            1. K
              Kaliyug
              Mar 14, 2016 at 12:51 am
              What Sri Sri has done is phenomenal, he should be praised and given more responsibilities to make the Yamuna and its banks a big park with plenty of activities for the old and young, a place where families can feel safe, clean and with lots of toilets and seating. The entire Delhi should feel proud to be at the banks of the Yamuna, only private enies can make things happen in India, the government is always slowed down by the Congress and their habit of asking for their share of the blood.
              Reply
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