Bharatiya Janata Party vice president Uma Bharti on Monday said that Lord Ram was nobody's "property" and added that the deity belonged to everybody. Bharti made this statement during a visit to Lord Mahakal temple in Ujjain on Monday, where she was asked to respond to Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister and state Congress chief Kamal Nath's stance welcoming the decision of constructing Ram temple at Ayodhya.
“Ram ka naam aur Ayodhya BJP ki bapauti nahin hai, ye sabki ke hain, chahe vo BJP me hon ya kisi aur party me. Kishi bhi dharm ke hon ya kisi samuday ke, bharat me hon ya dusre desh me. Jinki aastha Ram me hain vo apni raay rakh sakte hain (Ram’s name and Ayodhya aren’t BJP’s property. It’s for everyone, including those in BJP and those in other parties. From people from other religions and community to those residing elsewhere in the globe, if they have faith in Ram, they can voice their opinions on the issue," Bharti said.
Bharti added that one cannot adopt the attitude that they have a patent over this issue as there is need to remember that we are mortals but Ram’s name is eternal.
Senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh, reacting to Bharti's statement, thanked her in a tweet. Tagging a video of her making these comments, he wrote: "Thank you Uma".
On being asked whether PCC chief Kamal Nath is taking a stand that's different from his party because of the approaching by-polls, Bharti rejected the insinuation, saying it was a matter of faith.
However, she strongly criticised Rahul Gandhi’s reservations on the issue and said that the former Congress president always spoke keeping in mind a special "vote bank." She went on to say that Gandhi needs to remember that there is unanimity on the issue following the verdict of the Supreme Court.
Bharti further accused Gandhi of seeking advice from the communist, who according to her, loathe Hindustan and Hindutva. “If Rahul ji needs advice, let him take it from Digvijaya Singh and Kamal Nath ji.”
Commenting on Digvijaya Singh’s questions on Ram temple ceremony's 'muhurt', Bharti termed it a fundamental right of democracy but added that there is a wave of joy because of the construction of the temple.
On being asked about the invites to BJP veterans LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi, Bharti said: “They (LK Advani and Murali Manohar Joshi) are big personalities who are now immersed in self-pride on this feat (construction of Ram temple) and thinking that their stature will grow after being invited as chief guests during the bhumi pujan is a sub-standard thought.”
She clarified that she has distanced herself from the ceremony owing to the threat posed by Covid-19. Organisers, too, were trying to curtail the list of personalities to be seated at the stage to minimise the threat of the spread of the coronavirus
“Personally I was of the view that the ceremony should have included five or six persons including the PM, UP Governor, RSS chief, RSS functionary Champat Ray, UP chief minister and a priest and rest could have sought blessings later," she said.
Covid-19 is at its peak and we have to be cautious as you don’t know how and when the infection could reach you, added Bharti.
Asked to recount her best memory of Ram Janmbhumi Andolan, Bharti declined to single-out any particular event and added that according to her, August 5, when the Prime Minister Modi would lay the foundation of the temple, would be the most important occasion.
(With inputs from Anand Nigam, Ujjain)