A team of a pro-Ram temple Muslim group will visit the Dewa Sharif Dargah in Barabanki district tomorrow to offer prayers and seek “divine intervention” in the early construction of a “grand” temple in Ayodhya. The visit by a 15-member team of the Shri Ram Mandir Nirman Muslim Karsewak Manch was announced after saints pledged to intensify their campaign for building the temple. “We will seek divine intervention for the construction of a grand temple for Ram Lalla in Ayodhya,” Mohd Azam Khan, the Manch president, told PTI today. Azam went on to say, “If the temple is built at a place, where Lord Ram was born, then we will hold a ‘bhandara’ (mass feasting) for 1,000 poor people. We will also offer ‘chaadars’ made of gold and silver at the shrine.”
The Dewa Sharif Dargah, located almost 45 kilometres from here, is famous for the shrine of Haji Waris Ali Shah, a sufi saint. A push for construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya is likely to gain momentum from Guru Poornima next week when saints gather at the Naradanand Ashram in Sitapur to chalk out a roadmap in this regard. “Saints from different akhadas of Uttar Pradesh and neighbouring states will be assembling at the ashram to discuss and deliberate on the construction of a grand Ram temple in Ayodhya,” Swami Vidya Chetanaiya Maharaj, who heads the Nardanand Ashram (in Sitapur), said.
“Guru Poornima is on July 9 and it will mark the beginning of a campaign to gather support from not only the saints, but also from the common public for construction of the Ram temple,” he told PTI. Referring to his June 27 meeting with Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Chetanaiya Maharaj said, “We are confident that the commencement of construction of a grand Ram temple will begin well before 2019.”
The 58-year-old saint also informed that after the Guru Poornima rituals are completed in Naradanand Ashram, he will embark on a special rath (chariot) and travel to different ashrams in the state, and also in the neighbouring states of Rajasthan, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Uttarakhand to elicit support for construction of the temple.