Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), an affiliate of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), is promoting its Hindutva ideology by holding 5,000 rallies across India, including several across Maharashtra, and seeking support for the contentious Ram temple issue.
The right wing outfit, which spearheaded several agitations for construction of a Ram temple at Ayodhya in the 80s and 90s, thinks this is the right time to give the issue an impetus. The outfit, which recently held three meetings in Thane, Mumbai and Ulhasnagar in the last two days, has claimed to have received an unexpectedly overwhelming response and said that it will keep up the tempo until it achieves its goal.
“I think Yogi and Modi is a rare combination, which will never happen again. We have been demanding an amendment to the law to ensure that a temple is built on the disputed land. An amicable solution between Hindu organisations and representatives from the Muslim community seems impossible. Also, the Supreme Court’s decision [out of court settlement] could be challenged by the losing side. Hence, we are seeking government’s intervention,” said Surendra Jain, joint general secretary, VHP.
He added, “We must realise that the country is entering a saffron era, with overwhelming support from the youth. With our ideology finding support at the Centre, we expect the actual construction work for the temple will begin in the next one year.”
According to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) sources, almost all organisations affiliated with the RSS and other right wing organisations have become active of late. “By installing Adityanath as chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, the BJP and the RSS have sent out a message which has been perceived positively by those adhering by the Hindutva ideology. Youth from across India is supporting the cause,” said a BJP leader.
However, political pundits said that neither the BJP nor the RSS is interested in building the temple and are just trying to gain political mileage by raking up the issue every now and then.
“If the BJP government is serious about the temple, then what has stopped it from building it? Why are they resorting to the street fights over the issue? They are only milking it for their political benefit,” said journalist and political analyst Dnyanesh Maharav.
Seconding his opinion, another analyst Prakash Bal said that Ram temple has always been the pet project of the right wing organisations. “They have been stressing on its for the past 75 years. Sangh has been strategically making its moves and Ram temple is its perfect example. Though political parties have been into the discourse of secularism, they never realised that the Indian society has a religious bend of mind,” he said.