Yogi Adityanath refuses to wear skull cap at saint Kabir's mausoleum in Maghar town, sparks controversy

During his visit to poet-saint Kabir's mausoleum in Maghar town on Wednesday, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath refused to wear a skull cap, triggering a fresh controversy.

Adityanath was in Maghar on Wednesday to take stock of the situation ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit. In a video, the firebrand Hindutva leader is seen declining the offer to wear the cap offered to him by the mausoleum's caretaker.

According to Financial Express, the caretaker then requested Adityanath to hold the cap in his hand, which the chief minister agreed to and then proceeded to pose with it for a photograph. The incident prompted a sharp criticism from Congress leader Pramod Tiwari and Samajwadi Party spokesperson Sunil Sajan. While Tiwari said that wearing the cap for a minute would've have affected Adityanath's religion, Sajan lashed out at his "height of hypocrisy".

The incident came two days after Adityanath courted controversy with his remark that "there should be no doubt" that a temple will be built at the disputed Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid site.

In 2011, Modi, then serving as the Gujarat chief minister, had refused to wear a skull cap during a fast for social harmony in Ahmedabad. Three years later, in a television interview, he spoke about the incident and said: "I believe in respecting traditions of all religions, but at the same time, I have to respect my own tradition. I can't hoodwink people by wearing such skullcaps… However, I believe in taking action against those who show disrespect to other's caps."

With inputs from PTI

Updated Date: Jun 29, 2018 09:44:09 IST