Andhra Pradesh BJP leader Vishnu Vardhan Reddy today accused the ‘conversion mafia’ of illegally capturing a holy site at Edlapadu that Hindus believe bore the footprint of Sita of Ramayana and a carving of Narasimha and erecting a Christian cross at the location.
Sharing pictures of the alleged encroachment, the general secretary of Andhra BJP claimed that attacks on Hindu temples were rampant under the reign of YS Jagan Mohan Reddy. He said that there was no place for Hindus in the state.
An image Vishnu Vardhan Reddy shared on Twitter shows a huge cross being erected at the sacred spot while another image displays what looks like a carving of Narasimha.
In December 2000, miscreants had desecrated an idol of Rama at Ramateertham in District Vizianagaram after which BJP workers had staged a protest at the temple premises. Two days after the incident, the hands and legs of the Subrahmanyeswara Swamy idol were found broken in a temple in Rajamahendravaram.
Three months before the two cases above, the chariot of the famous Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy temple in Antarvedi of East Godavari district was allegedly gutted in a fire mishap on 6 September 2020. There were more than 125 incidents of desecration and vandalism in various temples across the state since YS Jagan Mohan Reddy took over, some opposition party leaders in the state have claimed.
- 14.11.2019: Durga temple in Guntur
- 21.01.2020: Hanuman temple in Pithapuram
- 11.02.2020: Venugopala swami temple in Rompicherla
- 13.02.2020: The main entrance of a temple in Undrajavaram
- 14.02.2020: The Chariot of Lord Balaji was burnt in Bitragunta (Nellore Dist)
- 06.09.2020: The Chariot of Lakshmi Nrisimha swami burnt in Antarvedi
- 13.09.2020: The Silver Lions from the Chariot of Goddess Durga were stolen
- 15.09.2020: The murti of Saibaba was damaged in Nidamanur (Krishna Dist)
- 16.09.2020: Hanuman murti was damaged in Eleswaram
- 16.09.2020: Goddess’s murtis were damaged near Gundlapadu in Guntur Dist
- 17.09.2020: Nandi murti was damaged in Makkapet (Krishna Dist)
- 19.09.2020: Murtis of Lord Shiva were damaged in Chintapalli (Visakhapatnam Dist)
- 20.09.2020: Photo frames of Lord Ayyappa were damaged near Narasapuram (West Godavari Dist)
- 23.09.2020: Hanuman murti was damaged in Pathikonda (Kurnool Dist)
- 25.09.2020: Hanuman murti was damaged near Naidu pet (Nellore Dist)
- 05.10.2020: Nrisimha swami murti was damaged near Mantralayam (Kurnool Dist)
- 06.10.2020: Hanuman murti was damaged in Adoni (Kurnool Dist)
- 06.10.2020: Goddess Saraswati murti was damaged in Narasarao pet (Guntur Dist)
- 17.10.2020 – The main entrance of Sri Veerabhadra swami temple was damaged I Tarlapadu
- Hanuman murti was damaged near Yanam (East Godavari Dist)
- Lord Shri Rama murti was damaged in Vizianagaram
- Karthikeya murti was damaged in Rajahmundry
- 03.01.2021: Sita murti desecrated at Sivalayam at Vuyyuru, outskirts of Vijayawada
However, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy had earlier termed the desecration of temples in the state as ‘political guerrilla warfare” and wondered who would benefit by such acts. “These people are not even sparing God and dragging him into politics. They have no fear of God nor do they revere him, except that they seek to derive political benefit in the name of God,” the Chief Minister remarked without naming anyone after inaugurating the Police Duty meet through virtual mode. He wondered who would benefit by damaging temple idols.
The chief minister said the attacks on temples were carried out in a planned manner as part of a “diversionary tactic” by (opposition parties) to ensure the good programmes of his government were not highlighted. “It is political guerrilla warfare,” he said.