'Not meant to debase Ayodhya's significance': Nepal after backlash over PM KP Oli's remarks
New Delhi, July 14: A day after Nepal PM K P Oli claimed that the real Ayodhya was in Nepal, the country's foreign ministry has issued a statement saying that they are not meant to debase the significance of Ayodhya and the cultural value it bears.
"The remarks not linked to any political subject and have no intention to hurt anyone's feelings, they are not meant to debase the significance of Ayodhya and the cultural value it bears," said the ministry in a statement.
"As there have been several myths and references about Shri Ram and the places associated with him, the Prime Minister was simply highlighting the importance of further studies and research of the vast cultural geography the Ramayana represents to obtain facts about Shri Ram, Ramayana and the various places linked to this rich civilization. The remarks were not meant to debasing the significance of Ayodhya and the cultural value it bears," the statement said.
Oli on Monday stoke a controversy claiming that Lord Rama belongs to Nepal, not India.
"Real Ayodhya lies in Nepal, not in India. Lord Ram is Nepali, not Indian".
Oli said that Nepal "has become a victim of cultural encroachment and its history has been manipulated." Bhanubhakta was born in 1814 in Tanhu of western Nepal and is credited for translating Valmiki's Ramayan into Nepali language. He died in 1868."
"Although the real Ayodhya lies at Thori in the west of Birgunj, India has claimed the Indian site as the birthplace of Lord Ram," Oli said.
He was speaking at an event on the birth anniversary of Nepalese poet Bhanubhakta at the prime minister's residence in Kathmandu.