An idol of Lord Swaminarayan dressed up in RSS uniform of khaki shorts and white shirt at a Surat- based temple has kicked up a storm with the Congress today terming it as unfortunate while the temple authorities saw nothing wrong with it.
The issue came to light after a picture, in which Lord Swaminarayan can be seen donning the Sangh outfit — white shirt tucked into a baggy khaki shorts with black cap and black shoes on — went viral on social media platforms.
The idol is also seen holding the national flag in one hand.
Seeking to play down the controversy, Swami Vishwaprakashji of the temple, which is situated in Laskana area of Surat, said the dress was gifted by a local devotee a couple of days back and it was the normal practice of showing the idol in different dresses.
“We have a common practice of presenting the idol in various dresses. This RSS uniform was given to us by a devotee. We do not have any other agenda. We did not know that it will create a controversy,” Vishwaprakashji said.
Notwithstanding denials by the temple authorities of having any intention of endorsing the views of the right-wing organisation, Congress leader Shankersinh Vaghela said they must refrain from such activities.
“What do you want to prove by dressing up the God in khaki shorts? I pity those who have done that. Today, you have dressed the Lord in RSS uniform, tomorrow you will dress the idol in BJP’s uniform. This is very unfortunate,” Vaghela said.
Gujarat BJP chief Vijay Rupani also said that it should not have been done. “I am really surprised. I don’t approve such action,” he said.