Temple re-opening row: Uddhav Thackeray, Maha Guv get into war of words, BJP stages protest

13 October, 2020 | Ojasvi Chauhan

Bhagat Singh Koshyari, Uddhav Thackeray National

A war of words has erupted between Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and Maharashtra governor Bhagat Singh Koshiyari over the reopening of places of worship. Maharashtra governor, in a le...

Responding to Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari’s letter over the issue of reopening of places of worship in the state, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday said his Hindutva does not need verification from Koshyari.

The chief minister said that as imposing lockdown all of a sudden was not right, revoking it completely at once would also be not a good thing. He said that he was someone who followed Hindutva, his Hindutva didn’t need verification from him.

Koshyari, through a letter written on Monday, had urged the Maharashtra CM to announce reopening of places of worship in the state. He had cited that religious places have reopened in Delhi, and across the nation, without any surge being witnessed in the COVID-19 cases, and had further questioned the motive behind delaying the same in Maharashtra.

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“I wonder if you’re receiving any divine premonition to keep postponing re-opening or you’ve suddenly turned ‘secular’ yourselves, the term you hated?” Koshyari’s letter read.

The letter also included representations received by the Governor from various groups asking for the reopening of temples and other places of worship. It is important to note that the exchange between the Governor and Chief Minister is happening at a time when the Bharatiya Janata Party is organising demonstrations across the state, demanding re-opening of temples for devotees.

Earlier today, BJP leader Prasad Lad, along with other party workers, was detained by police during a protest held outside Siddhivinayak Temple in Mumbai.

BJP leader Prasad Lad and other party workers were detained in Mumbai on Tuesday as they staged protests outside Siddhivinayak and Shirdi Sai Baba temples to demand the opening of all the temples in the state amid COVID-19.

During the protest, the party workers tried to enter the temple amidst heavy police deployment and barricading as they demanded the reopening of all temples in Maharashtra for devotees. Protestors were seen hold placards which read ‘Liquor on…..Temple shut, Uddhav your work should be shut’, translated from Marathi.

BJP leader Lad told reporters, “We are demanding that we should be allowed to enter the Siddhivinayak temple. If they do not give us entry, then we will force our way into the temple. This is a pan-Maharashtra movement as we want that all temples in the state should be reopened as soon as possible.”

“Liquor and wine shops have been reopened, even with home delivery options. But who will think about those who want to visit the temple for their mental peace? The government is not thinking about small traders whose livelihood depends on temples,” said Lad adding, “Government is full of ego.” The party is holding similar agitations across the state.

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