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Hindus welcome new Belgian government
Correspondent | 13 Oct 2014

Hindus have welcomed new government of Belgium lead by Charles Michel as Prime Minister, which swore in on October 11.

Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that although Michel's coalition took about five months to form government after elections, but it was still better than about 18 months of deadlock after the 2010 vote.

Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, noted that they hoped that Michel led government would make efforts towards narrowing the growing divide between mainly French-speaking south and mainly Dutch-speaking north.

Rajan Zed also urged the new government to work towards recognizing Hinduism in Belgium.

Zed pointed out that there was need to reform the way religious groups were recognized and financed in Belgium. Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought. What else Belgium wanted to fulfill its criteria of recognizing Hinduism? All it needed to do was to open a standard book on world religions and most of its doubts would be cleared.

As religious or "moral" instruction was reportedly mandatory in Belgium public schools and teachers were provided for recognized religious groups only, Hinduism non-recognition was thus hindering Hindu children from learning about their own religion, Rajan Zed argued.

Belgium, which hosts European Union and North Atlantic Treaty Organization, is known for its chocolate, beer, waffles, Bruges, cartographer Gerardus Mercator, Big Bang theorist Georges Lemaitre, painter Jan van Eyck, poet Emile Verhaeren, etc. Philippe is the 7th King of Belgium.