05 September 2012

Hindus welcome McDonald’s 'vegetarian only' outlets

Hindus have welcomed McDonald’s plans to open vegetarian only restaurants in India, which are said to be the company's first vegetarian outlets.

In a statement, Hindu statesman Rajan Zed said that “it was a step in the right direction” and urged McDonald’s to open such restaurants in other parts of the world. He also called on other international restaurant chains to launch meat-free outlets. “It would be a contribution to a healthier world and helping the environment,” Zed added.

According to reports, McDonald’s plans to open these vegetarian only outlets in India near Golden Temple (Amritsar, Punjab) and near Vaishno Devi shrine (Jammu-Kashmir). In its other outlets in India, its menu is said to be about 50 percent vegetarian.

Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, noted that Hinduism promoted strict vegetarianism insisting on ahimsa (not harming living creatures) and non-killing, and renouncing animal slaughter and meat eating. It suggested taking of sattvik (vegetables, fruits, etc.) and avoiding rajasik (eggs, etc.) and tamasik (meat, intoxicants, etc.) foods.

Rajan Zed argued that there was extensive protection of life in Hinduism and ahimsa was a command. All the major religions of the world were opposed to killing, he added.

Zed pointed out that many celebrities were flocking to vegetarianism for health and ethical reasons, besides reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. Oscar nominated Natalie Portman (Closer) has been vegetarian for about 22 years and Sir Paul McCartney has put his weight behind the Meat Free Monday movement.

Hinduism, the oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal.

Post by Rajan Zed

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