Targeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress Chief Sonia Gandhi on the Ram affidavit row, senior BJP leader LK Advani on Thursday demanded their apology for "hurting" religious sentiments of Hindus and ministerial accountability in the matter.
The former deputy prime minister also wanted the government to withdraw its affidavit before the Supreme Court describing it as "blasphemous and arrogant" after disapproving of its decision to file a supplementary document in connection with the Sethusamudram project.
"It(affidavit) is pouring contempt on crores of Hindus in the country and on Hindus abroad," Advani told a news conference as he announced that his party's youth wing and state units would hold demonstration on Friday and burn copies of the Centre's affidavit that said there is no evidence to establish existence of Lord Ram.
The BJP leader said the affidavit issue would be part of its election campaign. "Surely, it will be mentioned," he said when asked whether his party would flag the matter in its election campaign. Advani was of the view that mid-term polls would be held next year.
"Your are giving me a suggestion. I will certainly consider it," he said when asked whether he planned a Rath Yatra over the issue. Advani also had a meeting of party office-bearers and MPs on the Ram affidavit issue.
He said the government must ensure protection of the Ram Setu, an undersea bridge believed to be built by Lord Ram, by redesigning the Setusamudram waterway project.
"An inquiry panel should be set up to fix the ministerial responsiblity for this blunder (affidavit)," he said. In Agartala, BJP president Rajnath Singh demanded that the Culture Minister be dismissed if found involved in approving the government affidavit.