October 18, 2016

India: BJP MP Vinay Katiyar says Ramayana museum a mere 'lollipop'

The times of India

BJP MP Vinay Katiyar says Ramayana museum a mere 'lollipop'
TNN | Updated: Oct 18, 2016, 15:30 IST

NEW DELHI: Even as the ruling BJP faces opposition criticism for announcing a huge Ramayana museum in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh, its own Rajya Sabha parliamentarian Vinay Katiyar today called the museum a mere "lollipop", ANI reported.

"We should be trying to build a Ram temple, we won't be happy with this lollipop," Katiyar said, referring to the museum, which is set to come up about 15km from the disputed Babri Masjid-Ramjanmabhoomi site.

"Wherever I go in Ayodhya, saints ask me when will Ram Mandir be built, good I did not go today," Katiyar added He was referring to the scheduled visit today of Union tourism minister Mahesh Sharma to the site of the proposed Ramayana museum near Ayodhya.

Katiyar was incidentally the face of the violent Ram temple movement in Ayodhya in the 1990s. He's said in the past that the Modi government should "move to resolve" the matter without waiting for a Supreme Court verdict on the disputed site.

On this issue, Katiyar also has the support of Subramanian Swamy, another BJP MP who's raised the issue in the Rajya Sabha earlier this year. He said some months ago that both sides in the Ram Janmabhoomi temple dispute have said that a court order on the issue would be acceptable to them, and therefore government must agree to a do day-to-day hearing on the issue.

And Just on Sunday, Swamy said a Ram temple is the key to a win in the 2017 Uttar Pradesh polls. Speaking at a conference in Allahabad, he said no party could ever win an election on the issue of development alone, and that if the BJP succeeded in giving the impression that a Ram temple in Ayodhya would soon be a reality, then it would have a chance of winning the upcoming Assembly polls.