Union Minister and ruling BJP ally Ramdas Athawale has joined the Ram Mandir debate by saying the disputed land should not be used for a temple or mosque but something else should be constructed there.
Union Minister and ruling BJP ally Ramdas Athawale has joined the Ram Mandir debate by saying the disputed land should not be used for a temple or mosque but something else should be constructed there. In his remark on Sunday, Athawale told reporters that he favours setting up an educational institute.
“I would rather suggest there should be no mandir or no masjid constructed… An institute or some other project should be thought of to build… which will not hurt anyone’s feelings. In ’92, a large crowd demolished the Babri Masjid… such an activity should be avoided,” he told reporters in Pune.
Athawale’s Republican Party of India (A) is an ally of the BJP. On Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray’s visit to Ayodhya, he said that the former was trying mount pressure on the government.
“Only because Uddhav Thackeray visits Ayodhya and spiritual leaders put pressure on the government, the Ram temple will not be constructed… it will require orders from the SC,” he said.
The Union Minister’s remark comes on a day when the Vishwa Hindu Parishad held a Dharam Sabha in Ayodhya to put pressure on the government to take ordinance route for the temple. According to the VHP, over 3 lakh people attended its gathering in Ayodhya. The right-wing group said that it will not accept any formula to divide the land among the involved parties and that it wants entire 2.77 acre land for the temple.
Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray was also in Ayodhya yesterday where he offered prayers to Ram Lalla and attacked the BJP saying some people chanted Ram-Ram during the elections, they got into ‘aaram’ mode (relax) thereafter. He said that the BJP has done precious little in the past four years in power to pave way for a Ram temple, as promised in its poll manifesto as well.
The matter is presently pending before the Supreme Court. The court has said that it will decide in January to list the case before an appropriate bench. The Allahabad High Court had in its 2010 verdict bifurcated the land among the three parties – Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla. But the same was contested by the parties involved in the case in the Supreme Court.