With election in UP around the corner, Ayodhya hogs limelight

Eyeing a pie in Hindu vote bank, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has announced funds for modernization of International Ram Lila Complex in Ayodhya

With elections in Uttar Pradesh round the corner, can the chants for construction of Ram Mandir be far behind? After Prime Minister Narendra Modi chanted Jai Sri Ram at a Dussehra festival in Lucknow, it signaled that the race for Hindu votes has begun with leaders of all hues now talking about Ayodhya.

Eyeing a pie in Hindu vote bank, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has announced funds for modernization of International Ram Lila Complex in Ayodhya. The decision was announced after the NaMo administration announced Rs 225 crore for Ramayana circuit – of which Rs 151 crore is being earmarked for Ayodhya.

Union Tourism Minister Mahesh Sharma will tour Ayodhya on Tuesday to see progress of the Ramayana circuit – which Union Government wants to develop as a tourist destination. “My visit to Ayodhya has nothing to do with UP elections,” he said with tongue firmly in his cheek.

But his statement has sent out signals loud and clear.

Earlier, BJP Rajya Sabha member Subramanian Swamy said in Allahabad that the Ram temple would be constructed soon and the court could give its verdict. It was followed by another Bharatiya Janata Party Rajya Sabha Member and firebrand leader Vinay Katiyar who demanded construction of the Ram temple at the earliest in Ayodhya and suggested that if required a legislation should be brought in Parliament regarding this.

“It’s not only Swamy who is talking about Ram temple, every Ram Bhakt wants a grand Ram temple at the earliest. Till it happens, we are not going to sit in peace. Government should ensure that temple is built at the earliest,” Katiyar said.

He said it is a high time government should consider about bringing a Bill in Parliament paving the way for construction of the Ram temple. “Government should bring the Bill in Lok Sabha where we have a majority. Hence a message will go that when we will have a majority in Rajya Sabha, a similar bill will also be brought there,” he said while adding that the Ram temple issue is already on the party’s agenda.

To a query about the timing of the Ram Temple construction, Katiyar said: “We can not give a deadline for such an issue. Government has three options before it –either the construction will be carried out through court, secondly through a dialogue, and thirdly through legislation. I want government should consider bringing the bill in Lok Sabha on the issue of Ram temple.”

Asked about the BJP’s CM face for UP election, the BJP leader who is also known as Bajrangi said: “I don’t think we should project any CM face for UP. The election should be contested in Modi’s name only.”

Vinay Katiyar also spoke on the Uniform Civil Code and Triple Talaq. “There should be a common policy on population control. People should not be allowed to have more than 3 children. Ban should be imposed on keeping more than one wife. Those Muslims who have four wives and have many children should be arrested,” he said.