Jharkhand Education Minister Neera Yadav who was found paying homage to former president APJ Abdul Kalam’s photo in Kodarma, was at the receiving end in twitter.
However, a ‘shocked’ and disturbed Neera Yadav said that she had been praying ever since the moment she heard about Kalam taking ill.
"I just can't believe that he is no more. He had been like a guru to me and I could have never dreamt of insulting him. Whatever happened at the school was unintentional and I apologise from the depth of my heart," Neera Yadav told Times of India.
Nevertheless, no one from the political fraternity raised any objections to her tribute to Abdul Kalam last week.
According to Hindu tradition, the floral tribute and applying kumkum on the photo is something which is predominantly done to pay respect to a person after his demise.
And it is considered inauspicious to do it while someone is alive. This bizarre incident raised questions over the lack of cultural knowledge of the Education Minister. Even more bizarrely, the incident took place in a school where the principal and several other people including teachers present were paying homage to the scientist.
After paying homage, Neera Yadav, the chief guest at the event was inaugurating smart classes at the school.
After much criticism, Yadav said that garlanding great leaders in schools also means to honour them and that there is nothing objectionable in garlanding Kalam’s photo as he is a great scientist.
It's just freaky that the Education Minister of Jharkhand, Neera Yadav put a garland on the photo of #APJAbdulKalam just 6 days ago. Freaky!— Mihir Bijur (@MihirBijur) July 28, 2015
Just remembered that only recently Neera Yadav Jharkhand education minister had paid shraddhanjali to #KalamSir! Pure coincidence or what?!— BindiyaChotrani (@BindiyaChotrani) July 28, 2015
Jharkhand edu min Neera Yadav paid shraddhanjali 2 @APJAbdulKalam on 22/7. None thought she did it 4 real. Kalam leaves 4 heaven on 27/7— Narendra Pandey (@ProfNKPandey) July 27, 2015