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PTI | New Delhi | May 24, 2014:: As the Narendra Modi government prepares to take over, BJP’s affiliate outfit the Vishwa Hindu Parishad came out with a wishlist on Saturday ranging from Ram temple to law (read ‘ban’, Ed. HE.) on cow slaughter which it wants to be addressed within the constitutional framework.
Among other issues which it wants to be addressed are common civil code and saving the “enduring holistic culture” by incorporating its “vitals in the educational curriculum” and legal prohibition on “horizontal religious conversions”.
Addressing a news conference here, VHP’s international president Ashok Singhal said the absolute majority that BJP got under the leadership of Modi stands for triumph of the ideas and principles of Gandhiji’s “Ram rajya” (welfare state) and “suraajya” (good governance). To a question on construction of Ram temple, Singhal said that with the formation of a strong government at the centre, it would be definitely built “strongly”.
When pressed to specify a timeline, he said there was no need for impatience.
He claimed that the starting point for “temple development will be to ensure autonomy for Sri Ram Janmabhumi Mandir and the lakhs of Hindu temples taken over by the governments”.
Singhal listed several other issues which he said were related to Hindutva and could be worked out within the framework of the Indian Constitution.
Saving the Ganga from pollution and ensuring its perennial flow, law against cow slaughter, common civil code and saving the “enduring holistic culture” by incorporating its “vitals in the educational curriculum” and legal prohibition on “horizontal religious conversions” were demands which could be fulfilled through the Constitution, he said.
To a question on invitation extended to Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was a “formality” which should be allowed to happen.
He added that India should have good behaviour towards its neighbours. [Courtesy: PTI].
Arshad Afzal Khan | TNN | Ayodhya | May 25, 2014:: Sadhus and senior mahants who spearheaded the Ram temple movement seem to have been given a royal snub by the PMO as most of them have not been invited in the swearing-in ceremony of Narendra Modi.
This has come as a disappointment for more than a dozen seers who supported BJP in its temple movement and reportedly enjoyed lavish patronage during the tenure of Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s government. President of Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas and a senior mentor of VHP and Ram temple movement Mahant Nritya Gopal Das, said: “It is very disheartening. Most of us have not been invited to Modi’s swearing-in ceremony.” Looking sad and crestfallen, Das did not express any further reaction over this “snub”.
Karsevak Puram, the local headquarters of VHP in Ayodhya, looks deserted and no invitation from the PMO has been received here. “The place that was a centre of saffron politics and the favourite destination of BJP leaders from across the country during the temple movement has been completely ignored,” regional convener of VHP at Ayodhya Mahant Brij Mohan Das said.
“We have received no invitation from the PMO for the swearing-in ceremony. We really don’t know what to say,” he added.
Ram Vilas Vedanti, a senior VHP leader, who has always been vocal about the Ram temple issue, has also not been invited. Talking to TOI, he said, “When Atal Bihari Vajpyee took the prime ministerial oath, senior sadhus from Ayodhya were invited there with full respect. I participated in Atalj’s swearing-in ceremony with a delegation of sadhus from Ayodhya, but this time we have been ignored. I don’t know why this is being done with us. It is very disappointing and sad.”
Chief priest of Ram Janmabhoomi temple Acharya Satyendra Das, said, “They have invited a lot of people from Banaras but Ayodhya didn’t find any place in the list of the invitees. It is a sorrow that the city of Ram is being ignored.”
Senior VHP leader and mahant of Dashrath Gaddi temple Mahant Brij Mohan Das said, “Ignoring Ayodhya is a blunder by the BJP. It has invited film stars, businessmen and even Nawaz Sharif. Why have they not invited any mahant or sadhu from the city of Ram?” [Courtesy: TOI].