Breaking his silence for the first time on the much-debated topic of Ayodhya dispute case, Janata Dal (United) vice-president Prashant Kishor has said that his party would accept the Supreme Court’s verdict as far as construction of Ram Mandir is concerned. In an interview with The Indian Express, Kishor doesn’t rule any political narrative being built around the issue with general elections just a few months away. He said that this is because political parties believe they will be benefited in the elections.
“During every election, parties try to build a narrative which they think will work in their favour. I am new to the JD(U) but, as far as the party is concerned, we believe the Supreme Court should decide and everyone must respect it,” he said.
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Speaking about the stand taken by JD(U) on the matter, he said that the party is a part of the ruling BJP-led NDA at the Centre and being part of a larger alliance, the party will discuss the same at an appropriate platform.
“If you are implying that we, being a part of the NDA, must decide… the party will deliberate on it at an appropriate forum,” he said.
“But I don’t see the JD(U) changing its position,” Kishor who was inducted into the JD(U) on September 16 said.
On bringing an ordinance to start the early construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya, Kishor said that the JD(U) can’t stop an ordinance on the matter because it has not enough members in the Parliament. He, however, said that the JD(U) is open to express its opinion.
“With two MPs in the Lok Sabha and four-five MPs in the Rajya Sabha, the JD(U) can’t do anything to stop it beyond raising our voice and expressing what we believe is the right thing to do,” he said.
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“We can express our opinion, state our preference, but we cannot force anything… that will be decided by the majority,” he added.
Kishor had successfully designed and executed strategies for Bihar CM Nitish Kumar in the run-up to the 2015 Bihar Assembly polls. Later, he was made advisor to Kumar and worked closely with him.
About alliance issues the BJP, he said that in a partnership there are some issues on which both the parties are in agreement. “But, being a separate party, there are also some issues we aren’t in agreement with.”
He also declared that the JD(U) will not change its stand on things it doesn’t agree with just because the BJP wants us to.
The politically-sensitive Ram temple issue has once again taken the centre stage just ahead of the general elections. The RSS and VHP are mounting pressure on the BJP government to bring an ordinance to start the construction. The demand for an ordinance was intensified especially after the Supreme Court’s October 29 decision to defer the hearing in the case till January 2019.