The Karnataka Komu Souharda Vedik has urged the State government to “reverse the saffronisation” of Guru Dattatreya Bababudan Swami Dargah in Chikmagalur.

Vedike member A.K. Subbaiah told presspersons here on Wednesday that the Supreme Court in its December 2008 ruling had ordered that religious practices followed prior to June 1975 must continue at the dargah and that no new practices should be allowed. “The government should ensure that the Supreme Court ruling is honoured,” he said.

“The saffronisation of the hill shrine, which began during the tenure of the BJP government, should be rolled back. The dargah has been a place where Hindus and Muslims come together. We want this syncretic tradition to continue,” Mr. Subbaiah said.

The BJP government in September 2012 issued a gazette notification from the Muzrai Department renaming the dargah as Guru Dattatreya temple in the list of temples under the Dharmika Datti Parishat. “We demand that the gazette notification be withdrawn and ensure that all the government documents register the name as Guru Dattatreya Baba Budangiri Dargah,” said Vedike general secretary, K.L. Ashok.

He said the roads leading towards the dargah had signboards with the name Baba Budangiri on them. But, some of the signboards have now been replaced with Dattapeetha. “We request that they be replaced with the original signboards,” Mr. Ashok added.

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