The South African Hindu Mahasabha has said that the last rites are to send the dead person off with ‘rites and discipline’ and should not be used as a ‘chance to show off money’. SAHMS President Ashwin Trikamji said that as per Hindu tradition, funeral should not be a show of ceremonies.
Trikamji said that there is a chance to honor the departed soul with funeral and discipline. During this time the focus is on praying to God for the salvation of the departed soul. Salvation is possible only after the end of attachment to cultural objects. He said that the last rites had become an opportunity only to ‘show off money’ through bagpipes and Bentley cars at the crematorium.
He also said that people come in ‘English colonial style suits instead of white colored cotton kurtas’. Trikamji said that SAHMS has received complaints from members of the community about this type of funeral. One complainant said that crematoriums have become ‘a place to show off and make noise’ with bagpipes and red carpets ‘to earn money’.
Trikamji said, ‘Like marriage ceremonies, funerals have become a chance for some people of the Hindu elite to show off money. Many times it happens that when the deceased was alive, he was never given such luxury.