BJP MLA launches Narendra Modi's 'aarti', sparks controversy in Uttarakhand
An aarti of Narendra Modi, launched by a BJP MLA Ganesh Joshi of Uttarakhand, has sparked a major political slugfest with the Congress filing a complaint for equating the PM to God. Despite the row, Joshi remained adamant, saying that he would construct a temple of PM Modi, complete with his idol, after the coronavirus-induced lockdown ends. Here's all about the controversy.
The aarti was launched by Joshi on May 22, Friday, at a function organized to facilitate COVID-19 warriors. The event was presided over by Uttarakhand Higher Education Minister Dhan Singh Rawat. The MLA from Mussoorie shared the aarti penned by Dr. Renu Pant, a supporter of PM Modi. It's full of praises for the BJP leader and mentions the "historic" decisions he took.
The aarti starts by praising the "Gujarat son" who always helps the needy. PM Modi is a leader who scares the entire world, it says. The decision to send Hydroxychloroquine to the United States was mentioned. He was also credited for the construction of Ram Temple in Ayodhya and revoking Article 370. PM Modi was called "terrorist slayer" and the one who defeated Pakistan.
The aarti concludes with, "Kanchan thar kapur lau thai, aarti karat heera maayi (referring to PM Modi's mother Hiraben). Jo Modi Ji ki aarti gaave, bharat desh parampad paave."
In an interaction with News18, Joshi revealed he worships PM Modi daily as it gives him positive energy. "Prime Minister is God to me. What's wrong if we are praising him," he asked. In response, Indira Hridayesh, leader of the opposition, said, "Such acts reflect of a dangerous culture. No one can be equated with God. BJP should focus on dealing with the national crisis."
Meanwhile, a complaint was filed by the women wing of Congress. It was alleged that religious sentiments were hurt. The youth wing also lodged a protest. Congress Vice-President Suryakant Dhasmana said, "It is the height of sycophancy and andh bhakti (blind devotion)." Congress wouldn't have raised objection if a BJP supporter did this, but the presence of a state leader was wrong, Dhasmana explained.
"They could have penned a new one but they decided to make changes in Hanumanji's aarti by replacing his name with that of Modi's. First they came out with a slogan of Har Har Modi in disrespect of Lord Shiva and now this," he said.
But Joshi refused to move from his stance, announcing on Sunday that a temple is on his mind. "I have done nothing wrong in launching his aarti and will soon build a temple with his idol in it," he said. Slamming Congress, he said, "Who are they to lecture us? We don't need any certificate from them but from the public."
"That aarti is not any official document of the party. It was penned down by a staunch supporter which was just launched by our MLA at an event organized by him in the presence of minister Dhan Singh Rawat," said BJP spokesperson Ajendra Ajay.