A day after RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat opined that the centre should bring a law for construction of Ram Mandir at the earliest, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath gave more indications about the construction of Ram temple at the Janambhoomi site in Ayodhya. In his Dussehra speech yesterday, Adityanath said that the ideals of Lord Ram must be imbibed and propagated and “preparations should be made for a grand temple of society just the way we organise Ramlilas every year with grandeur.” Earlier in June this year, chief minister Yogi Adityanath had said that there should be no doubt about the fact that a temple would be built at the disputed site.
The Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath was giving a speech at the Gorakhpur Ramlila ground after the conclusion of the Vijayadashmi procession that he leads through Gorakhpur every year. This is a clear declaration by chief minister Yogi Adityanath of the government’s resolve to construct the Ram temple within a short span of time. The way he has given this clarion call to his supporters to start preparing for the Ram temple in Ayodhya, his categorical language and unambiguous words and his tenor, everything suggests the official party line of the BJP that a grand Ram temple is to be constructed by 2019. Whether the temple is to be constructed after the Supreme Court finally decides the Janambhoomi case or through an ordinance are the options that have to be decided upon by the government. The construction of a grand Ram temple at Ayodhya now seems to be inevitable. It is only a question of when and how from here on.
Last month, the apex court refused to revisit the Ismail Faruqi case wherein it had been held that mosque was not an essential part of Islam and Namaz can be offered anywhere have to be understood in the specific context of land acquisition proceedings. It also observed that any religious place cannot enjoy immunity from compulsory acquisition, and the observations with respect to mosque were made in that context. This cleared a roadblock in determination of the Ayodhya land title case. Reacting to this ruling, BJP leader Subramanian Swamy had stated that this ruling would ensure that the matter is now expedited. Swamy had further added, “I would like the temple to be constructed before Diwali.” Swamy had also said that the fundamental right to pray supersedes the Sunni Waqf Board’s ordinary right to property and hence the court will ultimately rule in favour of Hindus. From this, it is clear that the Supreme Court cleared a significant obstacle as far as the determination of the title suit of the disputed Ram Janambhoomi site is concerned.
The apex court also acknowledged the fact that the wait for the devotees has been unduly long and fast-tracked the title dispute case that will be heard from October 29 this year. Given that it is going to be a fast-tracked case, one can expect that the judgment on this sensitive issue will be delivered very soon. After the case is decided as expected in the favour of Hindus, the construction of the grand temple can commence and be completed in 2019, hopefully before the next general polls.
In the alternative, the ordinance route is also open for the government. Demands have been made from several quarters in the recent past that the government brings an ordinance for construction of Ram temple at the disputed site. Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy who is a legal expert and a former Harvard professor had also made this demand in one of his letters to Prime Minister Modi. He explained that the government can pass a law handing over the land to an eminent body of religious leaders with a direction to build the Ram temple. He also said, “the existing claimants can be duly compensated for the loss of their claim on the title of the land.” It is therefore clear that this is a short route available with the government for construction of the Ram temple.
Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s speech on Dussehra yesterday and the accompanying circumstances strongly hint at the possibility of construction of a grand temple at the disputed Ram Janambhoomi site at the earliest. It seems that the BJP is gearing up to fulfill its long standing promise of constructing a Ram temple at the disputed site.