Kerala Tourism's choice of day to promote beef on its official Twitter page has received massive backlash from users, who are now urging Hindus to boycott the state.
On Thursday, the Kerala Tourism handle on Twitter tweeted a picture of 'Beef Ularthiyathu', a popular dish in the state, with the caption - "Tender chunks of beef, slow-roasted with aromatic spices, coconut pieces, and curry leaves. A recipe for the most classic dish, Beef Ularthiyathu, the stuff of legends, from the land of spices, Kerala." The tweet soon started a war of words with many questioning the tweet, while others lauded the handle for the tweet.
Tender chunks of beef, slow-roasted with aromatic spices, coconut pieces, and curry leaves. A recipe for the most classic dish, Beef Ularthiyathu, the stuff of legends, from the land of spices, Kerala: https://t.co/d7dbgWmlBw pic.twitter.com/aI1Y9vEXJm— Kerala Tourism (@KeralaTourism) January 15, 2020
The controversy then snowballed into a bigger one as several users pointed out that the tweet was on the day of 'Makara Sankranti' - a Hindu religious festival that was being observed the same day. The Makara Vilakku festival in the hill shrine of Sabarimala was also celebrated on the same day.
Among the hundreds of Twitter users who condemned the Kerala Tourism's tweet was Vishwa Hindu Parishad spokesperson Vinod Bansal, who asked whether the tweet was 'promoting tourism or promoting beef?'
"Is this tweet meant for promoting tourism or promoting Beef? Isn't it hurting sentiments of crores of cow worshipers? Is this tweet generated from the pious land of Shankaracharya?" he asked,
Vinod Bansal also tagged Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Devaswom Minister Kadakkampally Surendran in the tweet along with Kerala Tourism.
In another tweet, the VHP spokesperson also said, "Kerala Tourism must understand that you can't promote anything by hurting religious sentiments of millions of its own tourists worshipping Cows," and tagged Home Minister Amit Shah, Tourism Minister Prahlad Patel, Government of India's Tourism page and Twitter - urging them to take note and take action against the tweet.
Is this tweet meant for promoting tourism or promoting Beef?— विनोद बंसल (@vinod_bansal) January 16, 2020
Isn't it hearting sentiments of crores of cow worshipers?
Is this tweet generated from the pious land of Shankaracharya?@KeralaGovernor @CMOKerala @kadakampalli to please advise @KeralaTourism .... https://t.co/1lXplZjnA3
Some users urged Hindus to boycott the state and visit Tamil Nadu and Karnataka instead.
The beef tweet of @KeralaTourism during #Sankranti doesn't look like an accident from their part. It's just to enrage hindus & show solidarity with anti CAA protests.— Anjali (@iamanjooti) January 16, 2020
Sad to say this,what's to be done is just boycott tourism over here.Kerala banks on liquor,lottery and tourism.
Now since they are going SC against govt, it's time to boycott kerala tourism. Let them eat their own beef.— AP (@alok_19) January 16, 2020
On #Sankranthi2020 @KeralaTourism promotes Beef— Subash இனி® (@swamisaranamm) January 16, 2020
Tamilnadu celebrating cows.
Don't visit Kerala better visit Tamilnadu to know about culture and tradition.
Welcome all to Tamilnadu
Please RT , One RT = One slap pic.twitter.com/llfHXvMLZA
Meanwhile, those who supported the Kerala Tourism's tweet argued that people had the freedom to consume the food of their choice.
Kerala doesn't force anyone to eat beef bro.— V (@ivivek_nambiar) January 16, 2020
If you like it, eat it.
If you don't like it, have our yummy sadya (all veg and better than anything you'd have anywhere). https://t.co/9Cq0mdBuk1