Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami on Friday termed as "unfortunate" the remark of Samajwadi Party leader Swami Prasad Maurya that the famous Badrinath temple in Garhwal Himalayas was originally a Buddhist monastery.
Dhami said Maurya's comment reflects the "anti-national and anti-religious" thinking of the Congress and its allies.
"The comment made by the Samajwadi Party leader on Bhu Baikunth (heaven on earth) Shri Badrinath Dham, the centre of faith of crores of devotees, is unfortunate," Dhami said, reaction to Maurya's tweet in which he had said Badrinath was a Buddhist monastery until the 8th century when it was made a Hindu temple by Adi Shankaracharya.
Dhami said the statement by a leader of the Samajwadi Party, which is a member of the "Mahathagbandhan", shows the anti-national and anti-religious thinking of the Congress and its allies.
"This view also reveals the dominance of the ideology of SIMI and PFI within these parties," he said.
Uttarakhand Minister for Culture and Religious Affairs Satpal Maharaj said Maurya's comment on Badrinath shows his lack of knowledge of the 'Sanatan Dharma' and only wants to be in the news by making misleading statements.
Maharaj, who is also a religious preacher with followers across the country, said 'Nar-Narayan' (lord Vishnu) had done penance in Badrinath Dham.
"Mahatma Buddha was not even born then. That's why it is completely wrong to describe Badrinath Dham as a Buddhist monastery. Maurya should also know that when there used to be trade in Uttarakhand from Niti Valley in the past, offerings for Lord Badrinath used to come from the monasteries of Tibet," he said.
-With PTI Input