In the advertisement, the actor says he felt like having a “thali” (food platter) in Ujjain so he ordered from “Mahakal”.
“Thali ka mann kia, Ujjain mein hai, toh Mahakal se manga Lia (Felt like having a Thali. We’re in Ujjain, so ordered from Mahakal,” the actor says in the ad.
The Mahakaleshwar or Mahakal temple of Shiva in Ujjain is one of twelve `Jyotirlingas’ which attracts devotees from across the country.
Priests of the temple, Mahesh and Ashish, on Saturday demanded that the online food delivery firm withdraw the advertisement immediately and tender an apology.
They claimed that devotees are served `prasad’ on a thali and the ad hurts the feelings of Hindus.
“A company which delivers non-veg food should immediately withdraw the misleading ad referring Mahakal thali,” priest Mahesh was quoted as saying by Dainik Bhaskar.
The priests also approached Ujjain district collector Ashish Singh, who is the chairman of the Mahakal temple trust, and sought action against the company.
Speaking to reporters, Singh termed the ad “misleading”, saying that the temple offers free meals as `prasad’ and it is not sold.
After the priests demanded apology, people started trending “boycott Zomato” on Twitter.
After the backlash, Zomato issued a statement saying,”Mahakal Restaurant is one of our high-order-volume restaurant partners in Ujjain, and thali is a recommended item on its menu‘ thalis’ at ‘Mahakal Restaurant’, and not the revered Shree Mahakaleshwar Temple.”