Security increased around temple after Canadians fume over Hanuman statue in Brampton

Canada’s Greater Toronto Area (GTA) is increasing vigilance after complaints and fanatic attacks on social media related to a giant statue of Lord Hanuman being built on its premises.

A 55-foot-tall statue of Hindu deity Hanuman is being built at the Hindu Sabha temple in Brampton and will be unveiled on the occasion of Hanuman Jayanti in April next year.

According to a temple priest, the idol is 95% complete, and some work remains on the pedestal.

Temple priest Phool Kumar Sharma said, “There is security at our temple and we will keep a vigil even at night.”

He said that some people unhappy with the construction of the statue have complained to the administration and have also criticized on social media.

However, Sharma said that the statue in the temple complex is being financed entirely through donations and has not violated any municipal corporation norms.

“What they are saying is an attack on our religion and it is wrong,” Sharma said in the social media post.

The statue is being created by Rajasthan’s sculptor Naresh Kumawat. Known for his expertise in sculpting Hindu deities, Kumawat has created over 200 sculptures in 80 countries.

Attacks on social media condemning the statue’s construction began earlier this week, with one handle posting about it that it is “yet another reminder that we need an immediate halt to all immigration into Canada.”

“This is too much and will undoubtedly be an eyesore for people who have no connection with this temple or Hindu culture to have to see this every day. They could have been a little more respectful about the size,” read another post.

“Canada is a white Christian country. you can leave. Zero immigration and repatriation as soon as possible,” was another response.

Many were in response to a post by Ottawa-based commentator Roopa Subramaniam, who criticized the original post for Hinduphobic content.

“The amount of dehumanizing, bigoted and racist hate messages I am receiving from so-called freedom-loving Canadians simply for standing up for the rule of law is quite extraordinary. Imagine that an idol can trigger such a reaction, that too from a religion that is non-threatening and non-proselytizing,” she posted on X (formerly Twitter) on Friday.

Montreal-based political analyst Anthony Koch supported the temple’s right to keep the statue, which, he posted, is “privately funded and located on private property. There is nothing wrong in this. “Hindus are allowed to build religious monuments on their land like anyone else.”

The uproar over the statue comes amid rising anti-immigration sentiment in Canada as well as a trend of increasing Hinduphobia.

Notably, Brampton has seen several pro-Khalistan activities in recent days.

In July, “war zone” posters targeting Indian diplomats in Canada appeared outside the Bharat Mata Temple in Brampton.

In November, pro-Khalistan elements protested at a consular camp over the issue of life certificates to Indian government pensioners.

In February, the Ram Temple was vandalized with anti-India slogans in Mississauga city.