Haridwar: The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) is kicking off its two-day meeting here today. Prominent issues on the agenda would be the demand for the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya, the proposed citizenship amendment bill, the scrapping of Article 35A and Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir and cow protection.
The annual meeting of the Kendriya Margdarshak Mandal (KMM) of the VHP, an offshoot of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) held here is attended by Hindu saints. The KMM is the highest decision-making body of the VHP. A senior VHP official told a leading daily that the event would definitely take up the issue of Ram temple construction, especially in the light of the BJP-led NDA’s thumping victory in the Lok Sabha elections and return to power.
During its earlier stint, the NDA Government insisted that it would let the apex court decide. However, the VHP has been demanding a bill for the construction of the temple, pointing out that the issue has been pending for long.
Now that the BJP has returned to power at the Centre, some sections of the VHP and the RSS feel that the government should initiate the process by bringing in a legislation.
Last year, BJP Rajya Sabha MP Rakesh Sinha had also announced that he would move a private member’s bill on the issue as the RSS and the VHP raised the pitch for the temple. But the bill was not listed for consideration. A private member’s bill is the one introduced by Members of Parliament who are not holding any ministerial position in the Union Cabinet.
In February this year, a VHP congregation had adopted a resolution saying the Hindus will not rest and also not leave others in peace until a grand temple is built at the birthplace of Lord Ram in Ayodhya.
The participants at the VHP’s dharm sansad held at the Kumbh Mela venue in Prayagraj, criticised the delay in the Supreme Court in deciding the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute.