The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) hopes to revive its fortune in Uttar Pradesh with a promise to build a grand Ram temple in this Hindu holy city, party vice president Kalyan Singh indicated while launching the assembly election campaign in Ayodhya on Tuesday.
Launching his party's campaign, Singh travelled from the state capital Lucknow to Ayodhya, addressing rallies along the 130-km route. He offered prayers at the makeshift Ram temple erected at a disputed site over the debris of the 16th century Babri mosque.
"From this day we start out election campaign," the former chief minister told reporters.
"In view of the deteriorating law and order conditions in the state, elections should be held under the presidential rule," he demanded.
While the assembly elections are scheduled to take place early next year, local body elections in the state will be held next month.
Singh signalled that the party would resort to the temple card with a view to revive its fortunes.
"The temple issue is not a political issue but if others oppose the construction of a grand Ram temple there (at the controversial site), then we are going to make it a political issue," Singh said.
He also demanded bullet-proof security for the makeshift temple, saying that was necessary in view of the growing terrorist threat around the country as stated by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh last week.
Indicating a return to the hardliner ideology, Singh said: "Hindutva is our response to the growing 'Islamisation' of politics."
Singh said the rally to Ayodhya had generated an enthusiastic response from the people.
"We are gaining support and people are looking up to the BJP for a respite from (Chief Minister) Mulayam Singh," he said.
Singh demanded President's rule in Uttar Pradesh saying it was necessary to ensure fairness in the local bodies and Assembly elections in the state.
Ruling out Possibility of alliance with any party, the BJP Vice President told reporters in Ayodhya that the party was going to get majority on its own in the state and would form the next government without forging any alliance.
Alliance had weaken the party and I will ensure this does not happen again, he said.