Vaastu should not guide public issues
The decisions initially taken by the Telangana State government were indeed heartening — policies of distribution of land to Dalits, protection or revival of lakes/tanks, free education from KG to PG etc. However, the recently announced policies seem to have taken an alarming turn.
It is disturbing to see political leaders at the helm of affairs taking decisions on matters of public concern as per their own personal beliefs. The decision of Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao to shift the Secretariat, as it is not in keeping with his belief in Vaastu, is entirely outside any scientific reasoning.
Faith in God, astrology, Vaastu etc. is entirely personal and must be kept within one’s personal domain. However, when one is dealing with public issues, public property and public welfare, decisions cannot be taken on grounds of ones religion, faith and much less on the basis of superstition.
The CM’s decision to shift the Secretariat on grounds of the structures not being vaastu-compliant is absurd to say the least. The earlier CMs of the state — N.T. Rama Rao and N. Chandrababu Naidu — had rebuilt some of the structures as per their Vaastu beliefs. Now, it is Mr Chandrasekhar Rao who wishes to shift buildings on similar grounds. What if the next Chief Minister has different Vaastu beliefs?
This speaks of a certain mindset, which is not only outside all scientific reasoning but also of utter disregard to public property and public opinion. After all, is it not public money that will be spent to satisfy such whims and fancies of the rulers?
The decision to shift the Chest Hospital also raises many questions. Is the hospital in such a bad condition, ready to fall apart? Is it beyond repair? This needs to be examined by experts. What is even more important is that the state needs more than one chest hospital and one more can be built at another suitable area, which will also provide employment to many doctors and given appropriate care to patients.
It is unimaginable for the government thinking demolishing Ravindra Bharati, which was built to commemorate 100-birth centenary of Ravindranath Tagore, who is revered as a national poet. The whole issue here is the issue of public property and public space and their protection by the state. We have been witnessing a gradual erosion of public spaces, which are being filled with unauthorised structures, be they religious structures or any other kind. Almost every tree, pillar, any space today is covered by humongous posters, flexies of leaders, small and big.
The decision to built skyscrapers around the Hussainsagar is absurd and likely to ruin the lake itself. Already the lake’s size is reduced thanks to the kind of structures that have come up and which have contributed to polluting the lake.
There is also the question of prioritising policies. What the city needs is not wasting its resources on such policies, but looking into the basic needs of the people, particularly the marginalised section of whom a large number are migrants from the rural areas.
Vaastu is scientific, can be of great help
Vaastu is the subject of much discussion these days in both the Telugu-speaking states. Though I don’t want to get into political controversies surrounding Vaastu, I can say that there is nothing wrong if decisions are taken based on Vaastu, and such decisions should not be viewed in a political angle.
One can derive benefits from Vaastu in different ways. While it is not possible to follow all the Vaastu rules while constructing a building, it is beneficial to comply with vaastu as far as possible. By following Vaastu, people can harness the benefits of the cosmic forces, solar energy, lunar energy etc..
Vaastu is not a superstition, as assumed by some people. In fact, it is an integral part of engineering and architecture. Vaastu is also linked to astrology. I can confidently say that astrology would have 70 per cent impact on people, while the remaining 30 per cent would be of Vaastu. This impact will be known individually based on people’s own experiences. The impact may not be felt by others and that is the beauty of Vaastu.
We can use Vaastu to be successful. Success does not mean that it should be only in terms of physical or material benefits. We should realise that at most times, the benefits of Vaastu would be purely emotional or spiritual. At the end of the day, this feeling is something that can make people feel better.
Vaastu helps us bond with nature. We can position the buildings and rooms in a manner while allows us to have the most out of the nature (panchaboothaas). Panchabhootas are what world is made of.
The five elements are air, water, fire, earth and space. All the benefits and advantages are bestowed upon a person or a house by the proper use and placement of these five elements.
The buildings that are designed according to Vaastu are perfect in their structure, as they allow for maximum flow of positive spirits within the structure. This is one of the primary uses of Vaastu for a better life.
Vaastu-compliant houses are designed to make sure that the persons dwelling in them do not have a tough time. Andhra Pradesh and Telangana State, now need to enhance good relations, peace and harmony and there is nothing wrong if the rulers want to adopt Vaastu to meet this objective.
Though I have not specifically assessed the “Vaastu defects” of the Secretariat so far, I don't agree with the claims of some people that the shifting of the Secretariat is being necessitated as it has a “street front” (veedhi potu).
The Vaastu defect of “street front” is applicable to residential buildings and not offices or commercial establishments. Some people have been claiming that the Secretariat has been facing Vaastu defect of south-west street front, and the road coming from Ravindra Bharati touches the south-west part of the Secretariat. Another road, towards the Mint Compound, which is divided, is also close to the south-west area of the Secretariat. However, such a Vaastu defect has more impact on residential buildings and not on offices.
There may be some other Vaastu defect plaguing the Secretariat and that needs to be examined.