nce again Lord Rama is forced to campaign for BJP ahead of the 2019 general elections. BJP has got full majority power in both the Central and the State government of Uttar Pradesh. While few Muslim groups told that they will support building the temple, the entire country wants to know who is stopping BJP to build Ram Mandir? At least now people should know the true badges of RSS/BJP that they don’t have any sentiments towards the Temple and they treat religion as a vote bank to divide the nation. In their zeal, the cadre mobilised by the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) concluded that the main goal was to demolish the Babri Masjid because it was projected as a symbol of hate, a structure that personified proclaimed subjugation of Hindus by the Muslim emperors. Advani called December 6, 1992, as the saddest day of his life, partially because he realised that with its demolition, the BJP lost a symbol which could be used to evoke Hindu rage.
Since then, the Ram Temple always remained an unfulfilled agenda of BJP because once the mission is accomplished, it will be tough to mobilise people on emotive issues. The Congress campaign has almost entirely been about Modi’s Hindutva and divisiveness. This is partly because the Congress doesn’t have much of a story to tell about it, but also and perhaps more importantly, because it is desperate to unite the Muslim vote and stop the BJP’s tally in the Hindi belt. If the divisive appeal works, it will have to sit in the opposition. The government will then be formed by an alliance of regional parties supported by the Congress from the outside or a broad Congress-led alliance. That is the crux of the Congress strategy — to keep the BJP out of power in 2019 by any means. Both BJP and PM Modi are aware of this. So, the positive part of the Modi’s campaign has been built on the need for economic prosperity and that Hindus and Muslims should make this a common cause. The negative part, of course, is the constant attacks on the UPA government and the Gandhi dynasty. Even the worst is that they miscommunicate the historical facts and figures. BJP and PM go aimless on shooting allegations on all side of the oppositions but if you look at the Party, 80 per cent of the leaders that BJP has now, have joined BJP leaving all those parties to whom BJP is allergic. Hence, BJP is not only short of issues but the party is short of leaders too. This is the reason why PM Modi has remained scrupulously away from the Ram Mandir and the other big divisive issues in his speeches. PM Modi campaigned in the name of development, black money, and employment but in his five years of tenure, he could not deliver his promises; ahead of the 2019 polls, again Lord Rama can save him!
When the party was in its most dire state of affairs, the issue of Ram Mandir was a trump card for the party to consolidate the Hindu votes and generate such a feeling. The issue of Ram Mandir for BJP is the “hen that lays golden eggs”; they will not build the temple and move on because this is an issue and they can whip up emotions even in moderately rational people. This time it was ‘development gimmick’ and it worked well. Temple issue could be exploited but building it would be like killing the hens. These two communal passion and whipping issues would not be solved because when they are solved, they have to come up with new ones. So, neither Ram Mandir will be built nor Kashmiri Pandits would be rehabilitated.
In case, if BJP is serious about constructing the temple, this is the perfect time they can expedite the matter. They will keep Babri Masjid issue for the rainy days when Indian people would be disgruntled by false promises. If BJP has the will, it can easily draft a constitutional amendment or a bill to override the Supreme Court and do the needful. The question of Rajya Sabha is also simple; they will always find people to support it. Once the procedure starts, any party opposing the bill will leave itself highly vulnerable in the hands of the majority. Imagine that by some means, BJP is in quite a bad shape for the 2019 polls. If it brings out the legislation at a critical time, it will be a big win-win situation. If the bill gets stalled in Rajya Sabha, the Congress will be thrashed to the core for being anti-Hindu and if it passes, BJP will make itself extremely strong as the saviour of the Hindu Majority.
Even without any decision by the SC on the Ayodhya land dispute case, in 2019, the NDA will win the Lok Sabha for sure. By 2020, the NDA will get a majority in the Rajya Sabha and BJP will be bound to bring a legislation to make the temple. There are many arguments of building a hospital, dividing the land between Hindu and Muslims, constructing a mosque and so on and so forth. The matter is already in the court and there is polarisation of votes on the same topic. BJP pledged to build a Ram Temple at Ayodhya besides promising to gather views on the issue of triple talaq, ban mechanised and illegal slaughterhouses, form ‘Anti Romeo Squads’ to check eve-teasing and prevent forced migration of Hindus from Muslim-dominated rural areas if voted to power in Uttar Pradesh. BJP President Amit Shah opted for caution. He said that if voted to power, BJP would make all efforts to build a ‘grand’ Ram temple, but would conform to the constitutional and legal framework! With the overwhelming mandate in UP now, the moot question is whether the BJP will deliver on the long-unfulfilled promise. Indeed, the question will acquire greater importance as we come closer to December 6 this year, marking another year since the mosque – ‘disputed shrine’ for some – was demolished by rampaging Kar Sevaks mobilised by the Vishva Hindu Parishad. There is a need to understand that the Ram Temple will not be built in the near future because there is a legal injunction since 2011, when the Supreme Court stayed the Allahabad High Court verdict on title suits related to the Ayodhya dispute. The High Court, in September 2010, had ordered division of the disputed land in Ayodhya into three parts – 1/3 for the temple, 1/3 for the Sunni Wakf Board and the remaining to the Nirmohi Akhara, one of Ayodhya’s militant sects. The second reason why the Ram Temple is unlikely to become a reality for long is that the Sangh Parivar was not keen on undertaking construction of a temple. This is because the temporary structure that stands in place of the demolished mosque is a convenient symbol that can be used as a political tool for mobilising support. There is also a need to understand that the temple construction was never the main objective of the VHP agitation. However, now, Bhagwat took U-turn stating that the Sangh has been associated with the sentiments of crores of the countrymen in the efforts for the construction of a magnificent Ram Temple at the birthplace of Lord Rama, who is the personification of the life energy of the nation and an icon of upholding the dharma.
Only time can tell what will happen in 2019 but building Ram Temple has been proven to be a jumla again!
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