October 01, 2015

India: Ultra Right VHP reminds the BJP that their manifesto for the 2014 elections promised the Ram temple

The Economic Times

Gift Ashok Singhal 'Ram Mandir' on Birthday: VHP leader Vishnu Hari Dalmia
By PTI | 1 Oct, 2015, 09.09PM IST

NEW DELHI: A senior Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader today demanded that Prime Minister Narendra Modi "gift" Ram temple at Ayodhya to a leading Hindutva figure Ashok Singhal on his 90th birth day.

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and several Union ministers, including Home Minister Rajnath Singh, were present when the suggestion was made by former VHP president Vishnu Hari Dalmia at an event where a book on the life of VHP patron Singhal was released.

Singhal had played a key role in the 'Ram Janmabhoomi' movement that led to the demolition of Babri mosque in 1992 by Hindutva activists and construction of a Ram temple at the disputed site has been a long-standing demand of the right wing outfits.

BJP has also supported the demand for a Ram temple, but contended it will do so by exploring all possibilities within the framework of the Constitution. The matter is under Supreme Court's scrutiny.

"There is a tradition of giving gift to people on their birthday. I will tell Prime Minister Modi to gift him (Singhal) him temple. Rajnathji is here and he can convey this to Modi," Dalmiya said amid cheers by RSS and VHP activists.

However, all other speakers, including Bhagwat, Singh and Singhal, made no mention of the controversial issue.

Singh said if there was any pioneer of the Ram Janmabhoomi movement, it was Singhal.

"There is this ancient belief that Hindutva is a way of life and a humane religion. Ashok Singhal is a firm believer in this. He has become an institution," Singh said, noting though many people did not agree with Singhal's views.

Bhagwat said Singhal devoted his life to the country and Hindu religion. He had his opinion on issues but he always gave primacy to organisational discipline, the RSS chief said, hailing him and asked others to follow his path.

Union ministers Harsh Vardhan, Mahesh Sharma and Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti were among those present.

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Hindustan Times

Subramanian Swamy backs VHP on Ram temple issue

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Oct 01, 2015 01:49 IST
Senior VHP leader Ashok Singhal and Subramanian Swamy during a press conference for Ram temple construction issue in New Delhi. (Sanjeev Verma/ HT Photo)
In what could open another Pandora’s Box for the NDA government at the Centre, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad on Wednesday pushed for the construction of a Ram Temple at Ayodhya and demanded the government to acquire land at the disputed site for the same.
BJP leader Subramanian Swamy, who joined VHP leaders at a press conference here, too announced to take up the matter with his party led government at the Centre after the Bihar election is over.
Swamy and VHP functionaries, Ashok Singhal and Champat Rai, reminded the BJP that their manifesto for the 2014 elections had promised the temple’s construction and the Modi government should take steps in this regard.
They, however, told a press conference that they would wait for the Supreme Court’s decision on the sensitive issue before deciding on further course of action. “The government for a public interest purpose can issue a notice to the Babri Masjid Muthwali (hereditary supervisor) for acquisition of the land and building of Babri Masjid and offer (to Muslims) another site to build a mosque, perhaps across the Saryu river,” they said in a statement.
Swami said he has, in a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has made suggestions on how to move forward on this issue. “I have not received a reply. I will take it up again after Bihar Assembly polls,” he said.
He had also asked party chief Amit Shah to convene a special session of National Council of BJP over the issue, he added.