Rameswaram: After a controversy started over authorities leaving a copy of the Bhagavad Gita next to the statue of former President APJ Abdul Kalam at the memorial built for him at Rameswaram, a Bible and Quran were also placed to end the row.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated the memorial at Peikulam, Rameswaram, the birthplace of Kalam, on July 27.
The government was applauded for the memorial but it was also criticised for putting the Bhagavad Gita next to the statue of Kalam playing a ‘veena’.
When questioned, an official explained that Kalam loved the veena and that he often quoted from the Bhagavad Gita, but no official came forward to prove the claim.
The controversy began when MDMK leader Vaiko questioned if Bhagavad Gita is more sacred than the Tamil book ‘Thirukural’ written by Thiruvalluvar, and alleged that the Centre is trying to saffronize even the legacy of Kalam.
Not wanting the controversy to grow bigger, Kalam’s grand nephew Sheik Saleem placed a Bible and a Quran next to the Bhagavad Gita, to prove that Kalam was a man who was beyond religion who has a grand dream of a better India.
The next controversy waiting to happen is the vast usage of saffron like color in his memorial which can anytime be picked up by Tamil politicians.