As Ayodhya is gearing up for the August 5 ‘Bhoomi Pujan’ ceremony and visit of PM Modi, two veteran Congress politicians in MP — Kamal Nath and Digvijaya Singh — have welcomed the start of construction of Ram Temple.
“It represents the fulfillment of the long-awaited dream of the people. It has become possible due to the collective agreement of all people in the country. This is possible in India only,” Nath had said in a video message on Friday.
Digvijaya Singh also tweeted Saturday, “Lord Ram is the nucleus of our faith and the entire country is running by his grace only. We aspire that a grand Ram Temple is built in Ayodhya soon. Late Rajiv Gandhi also wanted it to happen.”
However, Congress leaders including Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, the general secretary and incharge of UP haven’t spoken a word on this major event happening in Uttar Pradesh. The event has sparked controversy across India with several opposition leaders like Sharad Pawar, Uddhav Thackeray and Asaduddin Owaisi questioning the motive and timing of the ceremony amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
Young Congress leaders want the leadership to clarify the stand, some even want to follow Nath and Singh’s line. The top leadership, including the Gandhi family, have apparently decided to give it a pass for larger gains.
When asked, a senior Congress leader in UP, requesting anonymity, said, “We never speak on the temple matter. It is the issue related to “astha” (faith and sentiments) of people and as a secular party we should not be milking it to further our cause. And if we oppose the issue, temple supporters will get hurt and the BJP will use it for its own advantage.”
The party has lately started building its network among Brahmins and upper caste communities ahead of 2022 Assembly poll. A little critique of BJP on this matter may lead to adverse impact.
Some UP Congress leaders believe Nath and Singh had violated the party guidelines by supporting the pujan. Some even called it a tactic ahead of Assembly bypolls on 27 seats.
Congress had hailed the SC verdict in the Janmabhoomi-Babri mosque case, favouring the Hindus, last year.
The Congress leaders defend, “We hailed it as it was the SC decision. Whatever, the BJP is doing now is just a gimmick. People in UP are dying due to corona and spate of crimes. Number of corona cases in India has crossed 17 lakh. Yet, they want to make it a grand event just to divert the people’s attention from the pandemic.”
Silver brick from Indore for Ayodhya
An 11 kg silver brick was sent from Piteshwar Hanuman temple, Indore on Saturday, for Ayodhya to be used in the construction of Ram Mandir.
BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya, who made this announcement said along with the silver brick, water from the Narmada river, which is revered throughout the state, and soil from Janapao, the birthplace of Lord Parashuram, has also been sent there.
The silver brick, Narmada water and soil from Janapao is being carried by Neeraj Yagnik, a local businessman and social worker, on a cycle. Yagnik was flagged off on Saturday.
Vijayvargiya urged the people to blow conch shell, clap, ring bells, and participate in foundation laying ceremony of the Ram Mandir, at 12.18 pm on August 5. Further, he urged them to light earthen lamps at night. “After 14 years of staying in the forest, when Rama returns to Ayodhya, the entire country had celebrated. Similar celebrations should be seen throughout Indore and India on that day,” Vijayvargiya said.