The media have been banned from the funeral of Satnayaran Maharaj, secretary general of the Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha (SDMS).
The SDMS executive issued a release via its media house Radio and TV Jaagriti a short while ago stating that this decision was taken after a reporter from a media house which was not named disrespected religious proceedings at the wake on Sunday night.
Maharaj died at 12.01 a.m. on Saturday after suffering a stroke on November 7.
His funeral is carded to take place at the Lakshmi Girls Hindu College at 9 a.m. on Tuesday.
The release stated in part:
We do not wish to express which media house the reporter belonged to as it is not our intention to engage in any dispute with any fraction of the media.
However, having regard to our express request made to this media house and their lack of respect to the family's wishes we (the family of Sri Satnarayan Maharaj and the SDMS executive) have decided that absolutely no media houses will be allowed on the Lakshmi Girls Hindu College compound on the day of the funeral (19/11/19) or the home of Sr Satnayaran Maharaj/ his family at any time.
The SDMS/press liaison will continue to be Sri Dinesh Rambally should there be any questions concerning the arrangements in relation to Sri Satnayaran Maharaj's funeral.
See entire release below:
Media Coverage of Sri Satnarayan Maharaj 's funeral.
The Executive of the Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha would
like, at the outset, to express gratitude and deep
appreciation to all sections of the society which
have reached out to express condolences, offer
support and share their love with the family of Sri
Satnarayan Maharaj, the SDMS family and the wider
Hindu Community. This is a trying time for all of us
and we could not manage without the said support and
Since the passing of Sri Satnarayan Maharaj, the
family and the SDMS have tried to update the entire
population of the unfolding of pertinent events and
information. We have utiliAed our Official Medium
namely Radio and TV Jaagriti. Additionally, the First
Assistant Secretary/ Acting Secretary General Sri
Vijay Maharaj and Legal Advisor to the SDMS Sri
Dinesh Rambally have fielded questions (in person and
via telephone) from ALL Media Houses.
Yesterday morning (Saturday), Sri Dinesh explained
inter alia the rituals/rites which the family had to
undertake and the fact that as Hindus, all social
protocol and social obligations are suspended. He
further explained that it is a solemn period of time
when readings of Hindu Scriptures are recommended at
the wake to be held each night.
Earlier this morning (Sunday 17th), several media
houses congregated at the SDMS Headquarters, Lakshmi
Girls' Hindu College to discuss several matters
arising in relation to the planning and finalising of
funeral arrangements. Despite pressing commitments at
this time, Sri Dinesh Rambally still fielded
questions from all media houses on an individual
level. These press interviews lasted well over half
hour. He continued throughout the day, to answer
questions from media personnel via telephone.
Subsequently, one reporter from a particular media
house telephoned Sri Dinesh at about 6:00pm this
evening and requested whether she could attend the
wake to inter alia interview persons in attendance.
Sri Dinesh advised that the wake was centred around
reading from Sacred Hindu Scriptures and those in
attendance were joining in prayer so as to draw
spiritual inspiration at a time when it was needed
most. As Hindus, we are duty bound to maintain
certain rituals and prayers at the time of death to
assist ourselves as well as the soul of the departed.
Sri Dinesh stated that interviews at the wake would
"change the complexion of the entire proceedings".
The said reporter stated that she understood and
would respect the family/ SDMS's wishes.
A few minutes later, the said reporter showed up at
the home of Sri Satnarayan Maharaj's/family's home
and proceeded to interview persons. The entire matter
detracted from our wishes, religious duties cast on
us at this time of mourning. Not withstanding, th e
obvious distraction which the Reporter caused and the
clear disrespect shown over our religious proceedings
, over ten pundits took to the stage and read from
the Holy pages of the Sri Ramcharitmanas (revered
Hindu Scripture). Our Dharmacharya, His Holiness
Pundit Dr. Rampersad Parasram had cause to address
the audience as a result of the unfolding of these
We do not wish to express which media house the
Reporter belonged to as it is not our intention to
engage in any dispute with any fraction of the
However, having regard to our express request made to
this media house and their lack of respect to the
Family's wishes, we (the Family of Sri Satnarayan
Maharaj and the SDMS Executive) have decided that
absolutely no media houses will be allowed on the
Lakshmi Girls Hindu College compound on the day of
the funeral (19/11/19) or the home of Sri Satnarayan
Maharaj/ his family at any time.
The SDMS/Press Liaison will continue to be Sri Dinesh
Rambally should there be any questions concerning the
arrangements in relation to Sri Satnarayan Maharaj’s
We would like to express yet again our deepest
appreciation to the thousands who continue to support
the our family during this period of bereavement.