Muslims object to Gayatri Mantra being played in Rajasthan labour rooms
Maternity wards in Rajasthan have become the subject of a controversy after a state directive to play soothing sounds in delivery rooms turned into a local district using the Gayatri Mantra.
In Rajasthan, the health department sent recordings of some sounds which they believed would provide some relief to women in labour rooms, but in Sawai Madhopur, the CMHO sent Gayatri mantra recordings insisting it helped more.
According to him, if a woman listens to the Gayatri Mantra, she does not feel the pain of labour.
He said that Gayatri Mantra is currently being played in the labour room of the district hospital but the initiative will soon be expanded to other health centres in the district.
A group of Muslims have objected to the development, terming it against Islam. They said that a Muslim newborn should be listening to Azaan as their first sound and not the Gayatri Mantra.
Reacting to the incident, the state's health department said that in a secular country they won't recommend the playing of Gayatri Mantra as an official policy and it was done at the local level.
"We are a secular country and such things cannot be recommended. We have not issued orders asking health department officials to play Gayatri Mantra in labour rooms. We have sent our own audio, which has healing and meditation sounds, to the officials concerned to play these in labour rooms. Maybe some officials are not using the audio that the state has sent. It will be verified" a state health department official said.