Uncategorized Indian PM Modi ‘appalled’ over temple in his name

Indian PM Modi ‘appalled’ over temple in his name

Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi

 (AA) – Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has reacted angrily to reports of a temple being built in his name in his home state of Gujarat. 

“Have seen the news about a temple being built in my name. I was appalled. This is shocking and against India’s great traditions,” said Modi in a series of posts on Twitter. “Building such temples is not what our culture teaches us. Personally, it made me very sad. Would urge those doing it not to do it.”

“If you have time and resources, please devote the same towards fulfilling our dream of a Clean India,” the 64-year-old Modi said.

The temple, which featured a bust of Modi, was built in the Gujarati city of Rajkot city by a former councillor, Ramesh Undhad. 

The temple reportedly cost $11,000 and took over a year to complete. It was scheduled to be inaugurated on Monday by a Gujarat state minister but an angry reaction from Modi forced organizers to call it off.

 On Wednesday, Undhad said that for him and his group Modi — who was Gujarat’s chief minister until he became prime minister in 2014 — is like a “god”  whom they have been “worshipping” for a decade. 

Modi’s rebuke comes after weeks of being accused by civil rights activists and international media for not “speaking up” on the rise of fringe hardline voices associated within the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party. 

In October 2013, eight months before he became the country’s Prime Minister, Modi reportedly told a gathering of youth that toilets, not temples should be given priority. 

“I am known to be a Hindutva (Hindu nationalist) leader. My image does not permit to say so, but I dare to say. My real thought is — toilet first, temple later,” he said.

Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party rose to prominence in 1980s during a movement to build a large temple believed to be on the site of the birthplace of Hindu deity Ram, in Ayodhya in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.  

The movement culminated in the demolition of the 16th century Babri Masjid in 1992, which was located on the same site.