Jain couple decides to leave daughter, 100-crore property for monkhood

A Jain couple who hails from Madhya Pradesh has decided to leave property worth Rs 100 crore behind for their three-year-old daughter

WHILE FAMILY members and relatives of a Jain couple from Neemuch, in westernmost end of Madhya Pradesh, bordering Rajasthan's Chittorgarh and Kota districts, were certain that the two would become monks, they did not believe the decision would come so soon.

According to a report by the Hindustan Times, 35-year-old Sumit Rathore and his wife Anamika Rathore, have chose to undergo Deeksha (the first step in the initiation into monkhood) under the auspices of Sudhamargi Jain Acharya Ramlal Maharaj in Surat, Gujarat on September 23.

Sumit Rathore (35) and wife Anamika (34) hail from Neemuch in Madhya Pradesh, where the former took care of their family business and the latter worked as an engineer. "We had no counter to their religious arguments and relented".

PTI reported that Sumit and Anamika had made a decision to adopt monk's lives when their daughter was just eight-months-old.

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Their decision has sent shockwaves across their hometown Neemuch. "One can not stop anyone when religious calls", they said. Sumit's father Rajendra Singh, who runs a factory manufacturing gunny bags for packaging cement in the town, reiterated. The function will be held in Surat and the ceremony will be presided over by a Jain monk Sudhamargi Jain Acharya Ramlal Maharaj. The Acharya told him to seek Anamika's permission.

Sumit's cousin, Sandeep, who is close to him, said, "He had everything that a man wanted". "This is the first time that such a young couple is taking deeksha and that too by leaving behind a daughter", added Bhandari, secretary of Sadhumargi Jain Shravak Sangh.

According to the Hindustan Times, there are less than 50 lakh Jains in India, and they follow a strict lifestyle - including a vegetarian diet. "People should worry about children abandoned by parents, or those without parents - not Ibhya, who will be raised by her maternal grandparents among children of her age". Despite the controversies, many Jain spiritual leaders have dismissed the debates by terming them as attempts to malign the community.

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