TEHRAN, May 31 (MNA) – Iran’s Hassan Rouhani has said a religious state is good; however, the state religion should be discussed.

Hassan Rouhani who was addressing a meeting of environmental activists and NGOs days ahead of World Environment Day in June 5, told the participants that a religious state was good, but he cast doubt on the state religion’s being so. “The state should not have the religion on its side; the religion should be the province of ulema, scholars, they should be only the sole advertiser of religion,” he added.

Rouhani believed that the government would only act to improve economic growth. “In the economy, the same rule applies; that is, the government should eliminate the barriers from the path of the public in an attempt to provide a framework of future economy,” he asserted, and that “in industry, the public should be bestowed the full control and the government should support these actors for an accelerated growth.”

President said that there was once upon a time that the environment was regarded as mere a ceremonial role; “in the past, authorities had not come to the fact of environment being of importance; however, over time, they found the importance of environment as they faced the issues,” he added.

Rouhani provided an example of traditional reactionary attitudes about environment and health. “When the government of the time demanded that the public baths should be banned in favor of more hygiene private baths, some lamented the loss of half of public faith; in Qom, I witnessed such lamentations by the reactionary forces; another example was when the government followed the example of the west on daylight saving when the same reactionary forces claimed the innovation was to fight the religion,” Rouhani told the meeting, and believed that such reactionary forces had no job other than thinking in the place of public their faith and other world.

Rouhani pointed to air pollution in metropolitan cities. “The case of Urmia Lake is not only the issue for two provinces of East and West Azerbaijan, but it is an issue for the whole country; if effective measures are not thought out, the risk would threat 14 million citizens whose live depended on the Lake,” he said.

The president also said that the Department of Environment had reported that some floating houses had been built on Karaj Dam, and that the Department had not managed to effectively eliminate the houses, since “the owners had powerful sources in the high places in the government.”

“We intervened as the Supreme National Security Council and removed the houses which ware about 240; however, they would not abandon the case and the phones on my office rang regularly,” he said.

He highlighted the responsibility of the Iran’s state TV and the other news media on improving the public culture on respecting their health and environment. “We should weigh the public accurately and bestow them the job. We should only provide the means and facilities for public to work and go forward,” he demanded.

Rouhani gave an account of his experience in the ‘west.’ “In European countries, they would force the individual disposing the rubbish in the pavement to remove the rubbish himself,” he told the meeting, believing that it was the same ‘prevention of vice and promotion of virtue’ emphasized upon by Islam.

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MNA
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News Code 102967

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