Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao on Friday expressed regret over the damage caused to places of worship in the Secretariat premises during demolition works and said new ones would be built in a more spacious area, a statement welcomed by AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi.
The BJP, meanwhile, warned the KCR government of "serious consequences and backlash from Hindus across Telangana for demolishing a Hindu temple in the state secretariat complex" and demanded construction of a new one.
According to an official release, Rao said he came to know that a temple and mosque suffered damage after debris fell on them when multi-storied old buildings abutting them were being brought down.
"I felt sorry about the incident.It should not have happened.
The government's intention is to build a new complex by demolishing the old buildings without causing any damage to the temple or the mosque," the release quoted him as saying.
The Chief Minister said a new temple and mosque would be built over a more spacious area even if it meant spending crores of rupees.
He said he would soon hold a meeting with the managements of the temple and mosque, and take their views. He promised that the places of worship would also be built along with the new Secretariat complex.
"Telangana State is a secular State. We will continue the secular spirit come what may.This incident happened unexpectedly.Everyone should understand this properly without prejudice," Rao said.
AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi welcomed Rao's statement.
"Detailed statement will be issued by United Muslim Forum very soon.I welcome the statement issued by @TelanganaCMO expressing government regret on the demolition of Masjids and Temples during the demolition of the Secretariat buildings," he tweeted.
United Muslim Forum comprises various Muslim organisations and AIMIM is also a part of it.
State Home Minister Mohammad Mahmood Ali and the Telangana Non-Gazetted Officers Association (TNGO) also welcomed Raos decision to construct a new mosque and temple.
Alleging that the TRS government has undertaken an "insulting and insinuating act of demolishing Hindus religious place of worship unilaterally", BJP chief spokesperson in Telangana Krishna Saagar Rao demanded that the chief minister visit the "demolished site personally and apologize for this government's action."
The BJP also demanded that a new temple be constructed at the same place by the state government with immediate effect.
Senior Congress leader Mohammed Ali Shabbir had yesterday alleged that places of worship in the Secretariat complex were demolished along with the old buildings that are being razed.
The state government began the demolition of the secretariat building complex on July 7 to pave the way for construction of a new secretariat. The move came days after the Telangana High Court dismissed a bunch of PILs challenging the state's decision to construct a new secretariat complex here.