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VHP plans rath yatra to create atmosphere for Ram temple

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat at Udupi Dharma Sansad in Karnataka, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) has decided to create an atmosphere for the construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya. It was after a gap of 32 years, Dharma Sansad was held in Udupi on November 24-26.

lucknow Updated: Nov 27, 2017 14:36 IST
Manish Chandra Pandey
Manish Chandra Pandey
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
VHP,RSS,Udupi Dharma Sansad

Buoyed by the statement of RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat at Udupi Dharma Sansad in Karnataka, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) has decided to create an atmosphere for the construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya. It was after a gap of 32 years, Dharma Sansad was held in Udupi on November 24-26.

Way back in 1985, the Dharma Sansad had given the call for ‘mandir ka taala kholo’ (open the locks of the temple) after which the then prime minister late Rajiv Gandhi had ordered opening of the locks.

Saints feel that Udupi Sansad had been lucky for them, which is the reason why they are hopeful that temple construction will begin soon.

“The Congress party was ruling at the Centre at that time and Narendra Modi was known to a handful of RSS men. Now, Modi is the Prime Minister. With an RSS man at the helm, we are expecting that temple will be constructed soon,” the saints said at the Dharma Sansad after the RSS chief set the tone of the meet.

VHP leaders are aware that the Supreme Court would begin hearing the Ayodhya issue from December 5.

“Saints from across the country are unanimous that a grand temple would come up in Ayodhya at the same spot where idols of Ram Lalla (Lord Ram as an infant) are presently placed. The Lord is already there and a grand temple is just a matter of time,” said VHP general secretary Champat Rai.

The atmosphere is likely to be created between March 18 and 31 when the VHP would engage cadres to get all the devotees to publicly chant the name of Lord Ram and hold ‘aartis’ in temples.

VHP leaders plan a simultaneous build up of meetings in villages where they would get people to reaffirm their commitment to the cause.

Saints associated with VHP like Krishnanand Saraswati of Kerala are contemplating a rath yatra from Ayodhya to Rameshwaram to revive the movement. “The rath yatra will be named ‘Ram rajya rath yatra’ that would start from Ayodhya and return after 14 months,” Saraswati told the HT over phone from Udupi.

Part of the plan is also to ensure that the proposed blueprint for ‘grand temple’ reaches Hindu households – an activity that VHP leaders hope would further re-connect the community to temple construction that would help in keeping Hindus united.

Ahead of the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the RSS had stepped up efforts to unite the Hindus by getting its upper caste cadre to dine with Dalits, which, along with the Modi wave helped the BJP win not only the 2014 Lok Sabha elections but most state assembly elections, including Uttar Pradesh.

“We want Hindus to stay united. Not just for temple construction, we would work to keep the community united after ending the barriers of caste,” VHP’s Ayodhya-based spokesman Sharad Sharma, who attended the Dharma Sansad, said.

First Published: Nov 27, 2017 14:36 IST