UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak attended spiritual leader Morari Bapu’s Ramayana reading at Cambridge University on Tuesday. The Conservative Party leader insisted that he was present at the event ‘as a Hindu’ and not as Prime Minister of the UK.
Begin your address with a spell of ‘Jai Siya Ram‘, Sunak emphasized the important role faith and religion played in his life. The prime minister said he aspires to lead the way the Hindu scriptures teach leaders to lead.
“I am here today not as Prime Minister but as a Hindu. For me, trust is very personal. It guides me in every aspect of my life… For me, Lord Rama will always be an inspirational figure, facing life’s challenges with courage, ruling with humility and doing self-forgetfulness,” he said.
This is believed to be the first time a Hindu spiritual event has taken place on the campus of Cambridge University. The Gujarat-born Indian spiritual leader is a renowned speaker of the Ramayana who has conducted Ram Kathas globally for over 50 years. His first such event in the UK took place in 1979.
“Although the focus is on the bible itself, Bapu draws on examples from other religions and invites people from all faiths to attend the sermons…. By the age of 12, Bapu had memorized the entire Ram Charit Manas and had begun to recite and sing it. Ram Katha at fourteen,” reads an excerpt from his website.
His last Ram Katha – held at Wembley Arena in 2017 – drew close to 10,000 daily listeners. Details shared on Morari Bapu’s website suggest the spiritual leader will also conduct similar events in Nepal, Gujarat and Kerala later this year.
(With input from agencies)
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Updated: August 17, 2023, 03:04 AM IST