Development is the new buzz in Ayodhya.
Its not without a reason that firebrand Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Narendra Modi (59) did not even mention the Ram temple issue during his recent election rallies here in Ayodhya. He had come here recently in his new avatar of Vikas Purush (Development Man).
Even Vinay Katiyar (55), the Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader and candidate from the Akbarpur Lok Sabha constituency has been silent on his favourite subject of construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya.
Taking a step further, the BJP’s Faizabad Lok Sabha candidate Lallu Singh publicity material talks of development and nothing about the Ram temple.
The temple has ceased to be a poll issue with the people now planning to vote for development and the BJP leaders have understood all too well that harping on the temple issue will not fetch the party any votes.
“Everybody wants the temple but I am sure the BJP will never deliver on the promise. We are fed up of hearing about the temple. We now want development,” said local shopkeeper Munna Sonkar.
Mahavir Singh, a student doing a PhD in English Literature from Faizabad University said the BJP was fooling people on the temple issue for so many years and would do so in future too. “People have lost hope, which is why they have refused to take notice of the temple promise in the BJP's manifesto,” he said.
What is more, people are not ready to buy the argument that the BJP could not take steps for temple construction while in power for six years because it headed the coalition government at the Centre.
“The party should have shown the courage to sacrifice its government for the cause it took up,” said Ram Tirath Sharma, a retired teacher.