Lord Swaminarayan Idol Clad in RSS Uniform Raises Eyebrows

The temple authorities in Surat have denied any intention of endorsing the views of the right-wing organisation.

2 min read
Lord Swaminarayan in Sangh’s uniform. (Photo: Courtesy: <a href=";set=a.596704687068873.1073741826.100001880427844&amp;type=3&amp;theater">Facebook</a>/<a href="">Twitter</a>)

In a controversial move, authorities of a Surat-based Swaminarayan temple on Tuesday decided to dress up the idol of Lord Swaminarayan in RSS’s trademark brown khaki shorts and white shirt.

The issue came to light after images of Lord Swaminarayan donning the Sangh outfit –white shirt tucked into a baggy khaki shorts with black cap and black shoes – went viral across social media platforms. The idol is also seen holding the national flag in one hand.

We have a common practice of presenting the God’s 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.
Swami Vishwaprakashji
Lord Swaminarayan donning the Sangh outfit. (Photo Courtesy: <a href=";set=a.596704687068873.1073741826.100001880427844&amp;type=3&amp;theater">Facebook</a>)
Lord Swaminarayan donning the Sangh outfit. (Photo Courtesy: Facebook)

Even though the temple authorities have denied any intention of endorsing the views of the right-wing organisation, Congress has come out and condemned the move. Senior Congress leader from Gujarat, Shankersinh Vaghela, said temple authorities 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.
Congress Leader, Shankersinh Vaghela

Gujarat BJP president Vijay Rupani has also added to the chorus, and blamed the temple authorities for the move. “I am really surprised! If at all it was done, I don’t approve of it,” said Rupani.

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