On the heels of a proposed temple to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh minister Azam Khan on Thursday offered to build a temple dedicated to Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, saying “why can’t a temple be constructed in his name?”
“I will put a proposal before ‘Netaji’ (Mulayam) for constructing a temple for him. If he gives consent, work will start for the same,” Khan said.
Justifying his demand, Khan said that Mulayam was a popular leader and has a number of followers. “Why can’t a temple be constructed in his name?” he asked.
Azam’s statement came after supporters of Modi in Rajkot in his home state Gujarat have built a temple for him. The temple, with a bust of Modi in the sanctum, stands on Kothariya road and is planned to be inaugurated on February 16.
Prime Minister Modi, however, said that he was appalled by reports of the temple being built in his name and asked people to instead put time and resources in fulfilling the dream of ‘Clean India’.
“Have seen the news about a temple being built in my name. I was appalled. This is shocking and against India’s great traditions. 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,” Modi said.
Hours after the PM’s response, Ramesh Undhad, a former councillor who headed the project to collect funds, said he has now decided to cancel inauguration of “Modi temple”.
“We felt pained that we hurt sentiments of our ‘God’ (Modi) and after his displeasure we have covered his idol installed at the temple,” Undhad said, adding it will soon be removed.
“PM Modi remains in our heart. We will take part in Clean India movement,” added Undhah.
Another member of the ‘Om Yuva Group’, Jayesh Patel, said the temple will now be dedicated to ‘Bharat Mata’, whose idol will be installed at the shrine which has cost Rs seven lakh to build.