Ram temple is for everyone: Yogi Adityanath

Updated on Aug 05, 2020 09:12 AM IST

I am overjoyed, our five-century-long struggle and wait is going to end --all because of the perseverance and reverence of the devotees, said UP CM Adityanath.

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath(ANI)
Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath(ANI)
Hindustan Times | BySunita Aron, Lucknow

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath has been personally monitoring the arrangements for Wednesday’s foundation-laying ceremony for the Ram temple in Ayodhya. In a telephone interview to Sunita Aron, Adityanath said the ceremony is a “dream come true.” Edited excerpts

How do you feel on the eve of bhoomi pujan?

I am overjoyed, our five-century-long struggle and wait is going to end --all because of the perseverance and reverence of the devotees. I am also elated, euphoric for tomorrow’s bhoomi pujan by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. It’s a dream come true and an exceptionally emotional and exciting moment for us.

Did you ever think your dream will become a reality and at that moment you will be at the helm of affairs in the state?

From the very beginning, we were optimistic about the construction of the temple. The Prime Minister will do bhoomi pujan at the sanctum sanctorum where the deity has been worshipped since 1949 . It’s all because of the struggle of the saints and Ram bhakts [devotees]. But though I was involved in the Ram temple movement from my early days, I never ever thought I will be at the helm of affairs (when it is actually built). It is indeed a matter of pride for me.

This is the first time when invites have been sent to Muslims also. Your comment.

This is a beginning of a new ‘yug’ (epoch) -- Ram Rajya -- in which there will be no caste or community, something which the Prime Minister has displayed in his functioning during the last six years.Whosoever has faith in Ram will come and contribute. I don’t foresee any tension or disturbance. The people were misguided, but now with the installation of BJP {Bharatiya Janata Party} governments at the Centre and in the state, communal harmony prevails. This was clearly reflected at the time of the apex court judgement {in November 2019 in favour of a Ram temple) . Peace prevailed. Even the opposition has realised that the issue was resolved after years of litigation. Nonetheless, law and order has been my government’s priority and it will be maintained.

If Muslims invite you for the construction of the mosque, will you or others in the BJP accept the invite?

The trust is right now engaged in the construction of the Ram temple which they want to complete within the stipulated time period. Let me clarify. The state government has not organised tomorrow’s function. It has been organised under the aegis of the trust. They have sent the invites, made arrangements and are accepting donations in a fair and transparent manner. The state is only taking care of security and is engaged in developing the area as a modern and aspiring city while retaining its ancient glory and traditions. The local people know the resolve of both the Centre and state to transform the holy city as a unique pilgrim centre.

Why are [BJP veterans] LK Advani and MM Joshi not coming for the event?

Because of the pandemic and their age , they were advised to watch it live on the [television] channels.

Was it necessary to hold the bhoomi pujan now?

According to the saints, this was the auspicious time. But we are abiding by the pandemic protocol from the very beginning, social distancing will be maintained and it will be followed in the future also.

Bahujan Samaj Party leader Mayawati has demanded an invite for a Dalit saint.

Saints don’t have any caste or community. Once they wear the saffron robe, they sacrifice everything. Nonetheless, all saints mahamandleshwars {spiritual leaders} participated. Shri Kamleshwar Chaupal is a member of the Sri Ram Janmaboomi Teerth Kshetra Trust. He will be present at the bhoomi pujan.

What about invites to the opposition?

It is for the trust to decide.

Why is the opposition in silent mode?

After continuous and severe drubbing by the people, the opposition has perhaps woken up to the fact that remaining in conflict with the cause of a Ram temple in Ayodhya will further jeopardise their prospects in future polls. Hence, they are in a silent mode. Anyway, Ram temple is for all.

PM Narendra Modi accompanied LK Advani on his “rath yatra” {journey by chariot} in the 1990s. Where were you?

The three generations of Gorakhnath mutt have been associated with or spearheaded the temple movement since 1934, starting with Mahant Digvijaynath ji. The BJP-VHP {Vishwa Hindu Parishad} created an atmosphere in favour of liberation of Ram’s birthplace. I was always with my guruji , Mahant Avaidyanath, and watching their commitment and determination. I was always confident that their efforts would reach a logical conclusion. I remember, in 1989 when Rajiv Gandhi was Prime Minister and ND Tiwari chief minister, my guru had flown to Delhi by a chartered flight for discussions with the Union home minister and others. Congress leaders said PM will lay the shilanyas. But discussions failed as Mahant Avaidyanath insisted that the shilanyas of the proposed Ram temple will be held at the sanctum sanctorum and not 100 metres away,.After all, the entire struggle was for the birthplace of Ram. Later, saints did shilanyas. The first person to pick the axe was Mahant Kameshwar Chaupal. I was serving my guru, who was in jail.

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