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Opinion

Akhada Parishad Divided Over Inclusion Of ‘Kinnar Akhada’

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Differences have arisen within Akhada Parishad on the inclusion of transgender or ‘Kinnar Akhada’ as the fourteenth unit in the upper body of the 13 existing Akhadas.

The Akhil Bharatiya Akhada Parishad, the supreme body of the 13 Akhadas, is divided to recognize ‘Kinnar Akhada’ as the 14th Akhada and thus allows them the holy bath of the Ganges during Shahi Snaan (Royal Bath) in Haridwar Mahakumbh.

While Akhada Parishad President Mahant Narendra Giri has branded ‘Kinnar Akahada’ along with ‘Pari Akhada’ and ‘Vishwa Akahada’ as false and without any resemblance to the official 13 Akhadas, a section within Akhada Parishad has endorsed to Kinnar Akhada.

In particular, at a recent meeting of Akhil Bharatiya Akhada Parishad held in Prayagraj, a resolution was passed on the non-recognition of the so-called Kinnar Akhada, Pari Akhada and Vishwa Adhyatm Akhada calling them fake Akhadas.

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Led by Akhada Parishad General Secretary Mahant Hari Giri Maharaj, this pro-Kinnar Akhada has warned to resign if Parishad does not recognize Kinnar Akhada before Haridwar Mahakumbh.

“I will renounce Akhada Parishad as I have given you a written guarantee of your inclusion in Shri Panchdash Nam Juna Akhada and therefore the privileged right to take a holy bath in the Ganges during Haridwar Mahakumbh. Kinnar Akhada also bathed together with Juna Akhada during Prayagraj Kumbh two years ago and it is likely that they will be recognized as an integral part of Akhada Parishad, ”said Hari Giri Maharaj.

Opposing the inclusion of Kinnar Akhada, Akhada Parishad President Mahant Narendra Giri said that there are only 13 Akhadas and that is what will remain the case.

“He is not fit to meddle with Akhada customs and ancient traditions. Be it Kinnar, Pari or Vishwa Adhyatm Akhada, they have no Kumbh lineage, historical, religious, spiritual and massive acceptance. These are fake bodies and Akhada Parishad opposes any privilege, recognition or facilities for them during Haridwar Kumbh, ”said Akhada Parishad boss Narendra Giri.

Urging Akhada Parishad to change his rigid stance on non-recognition, Mahamandaleshwar Lakshmi Narayan Tripathi of Kinnar Akahada said that they are also followers of Sanatan Dharma and will duly abide by Akhada’s rules and traditions.

“Akhada Parishad should be forward thinking, flexible and forward thinking in his opinion. We also hope that the Uttarakhand government will provide us with the facilities and proper land allocation during Mahakumbh, as it is done with other Akhadas, ”said Mahamandaleshwar Lakshmi Tripathi of Kinnar Akhada.

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