NEW DELHI: Post the official handover of first Rafale aircraft in Bordeaux city of France, Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh performed ‘Shastra Puja’ on the Rafale jet.
‘Shastra Puja’ is worshipping of the weapon.
Singh, after writing ‘Om’ on the body of the aircraft, placed marigold flowers and broke the coconut.
He then placed underneath the Rafale wheels, two lemons ostensibly to ward off bad luck, which is a well established Indian superstition.
As soon as the photos of Singh emerge on social media, it triggered a fresh debate.
One user on Facebook wrote, “India buys Rafale to protect the country, then they buy nimboo to protect Rafale”.
Defending the use of coconut and lime, Singh wrote on Twitter, “On the occasion of Vijayadashmi, I performed the puja of weapons in France today. It’s an age-old tradition to worship weapons on Vijayadashmi.”