Mumbai: BJP’s disgruntled ally in Maharashtra, Shiv Sena, has raised the pitch for the Ram temple in Ayodhya, especially in the run-up to party chief Uddhav Thackeray’s Nov 25 trip to Ayodhya. Speaking in Mumbai on Tuesday, Thackeray said, “Just like Rs 15 lakh in everyone’s account, is Ram Mandir also a jumla? When we’re taking up this issue, we aim to ensure that Ram Mandir is actually built.” (Also read: Sena Coins New Slogan Ahead of Ayodhya Visit) Also Read - Uddhav Thackeray a Revelation, Tweets Omar Abdullah; Sena 'Makeover' Earns Praise Amid Corona Fight
With one statement, the Sena distanced itself from its ally, the BJP. Thackeray said when his party got down to chasing an issue, it made sure it was resolved. He also raised doubts about the intentions of those raising the temple issue now. “This issue comes up only during the elections &once elections are over it is forgotten,” he said. Also Read - Maharashtra Govt Mulls to Lift Curfew in Phased Manner After April 14 But Conditions Applied
Thackeray is set to visit Ayodhya on November 25. On Monday, his party MP Sanjay Raut said the Ram temple issue was not a subject for the courts but a subject of sentiment and national honour and that his party’s campaign will continue for the same. Also Read - 'Like COVID-19, There is Communal Virus too...,' Uddhav's Warning to Those Spreading Misinformation
“Shiv Sena is committed to the construction of Ram temple. We have struggled for it. The temple is not the subject of courts but of sentiments and national honour,” Raut told reporters.
“Our headquarter is in Mumbai but we will continue to struggle for the temple,” he added. He said Thackeray will visit Ayodhya on November 24 and will attend a programme at Lakshman Kila and attend ‘saryu aarti’.
He will also pay obeisance at Ram temple on November 25 and will participate in ‘jan samvad’ at Gulab Bari.
Interestingly, the Congress has also alleged that the RSS and the BJP raise the temple issue only when there are elections to be fought. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has deferred hearing on the contentious temple issue till January 2019,