Stepping up its campaign on the Ram Setu issue, the BJP on Thursday attacked the Congress-led coalition at the Centre, demanding its unqualified apology for denying the existence of Ram and said a government displaying "such ignorance does not deserve to stay in office".
A resolution on Ram Setu was approved at the party's ongoing national executive meeting in Bhopal, but senior leader Murli Manohar Joshi made it clear that the party "would not directly take up the campaign. It will support the Rameshwaram Ram Setu Raksha Manch to save the bridge.
"We had never promised to construct the Ram temple ourselves, but had promised support to the endeavour undertaken by trusts like the Ram Janma Bhoomi Nyas," Joshi told reporters, adding "we will also extend all possible support to the Manch for preservation the Setu".
Strongly condemning the affidavits submitted by the ASI on the Ram Setu issue in the Supreme Court, he said instead of totally withdrawing the "blasphemous" affidavit and apologizing for its submission, the UPA government has even failed to identify as to who drafted it and at what level it was approved.
"The Centre is now trying to submit a supplementary affidavit and the Shipping Ministry wants to file an appeal against the stay granted by the Supreme Court," he claimed adding "utter confusion prevailing on this issue in Congress party has been reflected in the war of attrition going on between various leaders blaming each other for this fiasco.
"A government displaying such complete ignorance about its history, culture, tradition, literature and not accepting contribution of great characters like Ram and great saints like Valmiki, who had shaped the ethos of nation from times immemorial, does not deserve to stay in office," Joshi said.
Reiterating the demand for declaring Ram Setu as a world heritage monument, Joshi said his party disapproves the diversionary tactics adopted by certain groups by raising slogans and arguments which tend to divide people on the basis of geographical, linguistic and racial theories, which have long been rejected by scholars and the people as well.
"Congress will be solely responsible for any disturbance in the country's fabric caused by divisive forces by making statements aimed at inciting communal passion," the senior BJP leader said.
"If the constituents of the UPA government continue to insult Ram, the inescapable conclusion would be that the Congress-led alliance also approves such statements and is conniving with such acts of national shame," he alleged.
Accusing the Centre of ignoring expert advice to re-align the Setu Samudram Canal project, he said "instead of a canal project in the sea, if a land-based project is mooted, the BJP will welcome it".