India condemned the plan by the pastor of a small Florida church in the United States to burn copies of the Holy Quran to mark the 9/11 attacks and asked US to take "strong action" to prevent such an "outrage" being committed.
"We condemn the action of the pastor. It is totally unbecoming of anyone who claims to be a man of religion," Home Minister P Chidambaram said in a statement on Thursday.
The Home Minister said the move was obviously calculated to "increase bitterness and strife" between different religious groups.
Pastor Terry Jones has threatened to burn copies of the Quran to mark the ninth
anniversary of the September 11 terror attack in the US.
Besides the authorities, religious and political leaders all over the world have also condemned his proposed action, warning of an adverse fallout.
"No one who is interested in maintaining harmony and peace among different sections of the people can condone such action," he said, hoping that US authorities would take strong action to prevent such an outrage being committed.
While deploring Pastor Terry Jones's move to burn copies of Islam's holiest text on September 11, he also urged the Indian media to exercise "great restraint" over the coverage of the act to help maintain peace and harmony.
"While we await the action of the authorities, we would appeal to the media in - both print and visual media - to refrain from telecasting visuals or publishing photographs of the deplorable act," Chidambaram said.