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UP Elections 2017: People in Ayodhya want tourism, development over Mandir-Masjid

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New Delhi | Published: February 27, 2017 12:20:21 PM

People believe that tourism can play a significant role in developing the area, the report says

People believe that tourism can play a significant role in developing the area, the report says. (PTI image)

Since December 6, 1991, when Babri Masjid was demolished in Ayodhya, the issue of building Ram Temple has become a focal point of the country’s political landscape and it is evident during the ongoing Uttar Pradesh Assembly Elections 2017. With the Constituency going to polls during the fifth phase of voting today, all eyes will be on incumbent MLA Tej Narain Pandey alias Pawan Pandey of Samajwadi Party (SP). So, far parties have used the temple and mosque issue to lure electorates but this time people have underlined that they want ‘development and opportunities’, according to The Indian Express report. People believe that there is life beyond this and tourism can play a significant role in developing the area, the report says.

Ayodhya is a pivotal constituency for the BJP. It rose to power on the back of the Ram Mandir movement and, after the demolition, won the assembly seat four times before suffering a shock defeat to the SP in 2012 Assembly Elections. The fight this time is repoprtedly between the BJP and the ruling SP.

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Earlier, the Narendra Modi governments had planned to set up a Ramayana Museum in Ayodhya and even a 25 acre plot having been identified for it some 15 km away from the disputed Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid complex.

Recently, BJP MP Yogi Adityanath had said the hurdles on the path of construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya will be gradually removed and its construction will start “soon”.

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“Chhattisgarh was Lord Ram’s ‘nanihal’ (his mother Kaushlya’s maternal home). According to ‘jyotishi manyata’ (astrology), when the Lord will settle at his ‘nanihal’, it would automatically pave the way for the construction of a (Ram) temple (in Ayodhya). The hurdles on the path of construction of a grand Ram temple will be gradually removed and its construction will soon start in Ayodhya,” he added.

Voting has begun for the phase 5 polling of Uttar Pradesh Elections 2017. Stakes are high for BJP, SP-Congress alliance, BSP in 51 Assembly constituencies spread across 11 districts. The districts going to polls in this phase are Balrampur, Gonda, Faizabad, Ambedkar Nagar, Bahraich, Shravasti, Siddharth Nagar, Basti, Sant Kabir Nagar, Amethi, and Sultanpur. Due to death of Samajwadi Party candidate Chandrashekhar Kanaujia in Alapur (Ambedkar Nagar), the EC has announced fresh date of voting in this constituency on March 9. The ruling Samajwadi Party had won 37 seats out of 52 (total seats in this phase including Alapur) in 2012. While BJP and Congress won five seats each, BSP had won three and Peace Party won two seats. With certain districts not far from the Nepal border, Prime Minister Narendra Modi made it a point in his speech in Gonda to refer to the Kanpur train tragedy in which 150 people were killed. Modi had said the accident was due to a “conspiracy” and the perpetrators carried it out “sitting across the border” in Nepal.

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