With the way things are moving, looks like Ayodhya is likely to be a converging point of religions. With Hindus, Muslims and Hanuman bhakts already in queue, it is now time for Buddhists to lay a claim for a land to construct a Buddha Temple in the holy city. The Union Minister of State (MoS) for Social Justice and Empowerment, Ramdas Athawale has demanded 20 acres of land for the construction of a Buddhist temple in Ayodhya.
Athawale told Afternoon Voice that he is soon going to meet all BJP leaders including CM of Uttar Pradesh Yogi Adityanath to demand land for a Buddha temple. “Nearly 20 acres should be allotted to Buddhists and a grand Buddha temple should be constructed in there,” he said.
In its verdict last year, the Supreme Court gave the disputed land in Ayodhya to the Hindus for the construction of Ram temple in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title suit verdict. The apex court directed the UP government to give 5 acres of land to the Sunni Waqf Board as an alternate place in Ayodhya to build a mosque. However, Ramdas Athawale has demanded 10 to 20 acres of land for the construction of a Buddha temple. “If my demand is not considered, those of us who believe in the Buddhism will form a trust. We will acquire a piece of land in Ayodhya and construct a Buddha temple there,” Athawale observed.
During the reign of Emperor Ashoka, there were many Buddhist temples in India before the influence of Hinduism increased. Many temples were constructed at several places with the influence of Guru Shankaracharya and Hindu religion. “After the arrival of the Mughals in India, they demolished temples and started building mosques. The government has now decided to pursue the construction of Ram Temple after the Supreme Court’s decision,” added Athawale. On Thursday, the members of Shri Ram Bhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust (or Ayodhya Ram Mandir Trust) met Prime Minister Narendra Modi at his residence and invited him to lay the foundation stone of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya.
Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader Champat Rai was appointed as the general secretary of the Trust. Later, it was said that the Prime Minister has urged the ‘Sangh Parivar’ to avoid controversial statements.