Priests perform Shila Pujan of stones for construction of Ram temple at Ayodhya (Photo: PTI)
Lucknow: The All India Hindu Mahasabha and the Sant Sabha, a body of saints, have put up hoardings serving an ultimatum to the Modi government. The hoardings, plastered all over the state capital, say, ‘Agar 2016 mein mandir nirman nahi, to 2017 mein matdaan nahin’ and ‘Bhool gaye mandir ka vada, phir ho gaye anjaane/ Gau bhakshak (cow killers) ho mantra jiske, usko kya Hindu pehachane’.
The hoardings carry the photograph of Swami Chakrapani, the ‘national president’ of the Hindu Mahasabha. The Chakrapani faction of the Hindu Mahasabha has suddenly become active after Kamlesh Tiwari was jailed under the National Security Act.
Talking to a select group of reporters, Swami Chakrapani said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised to ban cow slaughter across the country, bring back black money stashed abroad and clear the way for temple construction.
"The state BJP president is saying that Ram temple is not on the party’s agenda. Instead of banning cow slaughter, leaders like Kiran Rijiju have been made ministers and there are no signs of the black money being brought back," he said.
Hindu Mahasabha sources said that plans were being made to intensify the campaign for the Ram temple in Ayodhya and put the Modi government in an ‘uncomfortable’ position.
The BJP spokesman Vijay Bahadur Pathak, meanwhile, said that the BJP was not running away from any questions and its leaders had already clarified that the Ram temple issue was a matter of faith and not an election issue.
Interestingly, the Hindu Mahasabha hoardings were ripped off within 24 hours and a municipal official said that they had nothing to do with it. "Strong winds have been blowing across Lucknow and it is possible that the hoardings may have got torn," he stated.