Russian courts to rule on whether Hare Krishnas "Bible" is 'extremist'

From my limited contact with them, the HKs are not a very humble lot but they are not alone in that. I think they are essentially peaceful.
Russian courts are set to decide today whether the book central to the non-violent Hare Krishna movement is 'extremist' and should be banned.

Prosecutors in the Siberian city of Tomsk say that the Russian translation of Bhagavad Gita As It Is - which teaches humane attitudes to all living things - encourages 'social discord' and hatred towards non-believers.

They said it should join Adolf Hitler's manifesto Mein Kampf on Russia's Federal List of Extremist Materials, a register of banned books containing more than 1,000 prohibited texts.

Yuri Pleshkov, a spokesman for the group in Russia, said the book in question has existed in the country for 25 years and has never inspired violence or extremist activity.

The Foreign Ministry insisted that the Tomsk court is not taking issue with core Hindu scripture itself, but rather with the author's commentary and poor translation in Bhagavad Gita As It Is.

'I would like to emphasize that this is not about 'Bhagavad Gita,' a religious philosophical poem, which forms part of the great Indian epic Mahabharata and is one of the most famous pieces of the ancient Hindu literature,' ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said at a briefing in Moscow on Thursday, adding that the book was first published in Russian in 1788.


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