Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday tweeted he was 'appalled' over news that there was a temple being built in his name. He also said it was against 'India's great traditions'.
"Have seen the news about a Temple being built in my name. I was appalled. This is shocking & against India's great traditions," Modi tweeted after newspapers reported that a temple in his name will be opened in Kotharia village in Gujarat's Rajkot district.
"Building such Temples is not what our culture teaches us. Personally, it made me very sad. Would urge those doing it not to do it." he added.
The Prime Minister also urged those behind the building of the temple to devote the time and resources to fulfilling his "dream of a Clean India."
The temple was being built by some of Modi's staunch supporters with his idol clad in his trademark half sleeve kurta and jacket with lotus embossed saffron dupatta.
The villagers collected around Rs 4.5 lakh to build the temple including the idol which cost them Rs. 1.6 lakh.
Before they got the idol made by an artist from Odisha, they used to offer prayers before a photo of Modi, some villagers claimed.
The villagers had invited local BJP leaders including the legislators and Rajkot MP and Union minister Mohanbhai Kundaria for the temple opening ceremony on Sunday.
The village, adjacent to Rajkot city, has recently been merged with Rajkot Municipal Corporation area.
According to Maganbhai Patel, a local villager and builder, the village Panchayat had given 350 square yard land to build a temple of “Mother India” 10 years back and a small temple of Mother India was built over the land.
However, after Narendra Modi became Prime Minister, the villagers and particularly local BJP workers decided to covert the Mother India temple into a Narendra Modi temple with Modi’s idol.