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Ayodhya LIVE: With a Fistful of Soil, VHP Administers 'Ram Temple Oath' to Dharam Sabha Attendees

News18.com | November 25, 2018, 6:05 PM IST
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Ayodhya LIVE: The temple town of Ayodhya is witnessing its biggest congregation of Right-wing activists since December 6, 1992 when the Babri Masjid was demolished. Thousands have gathered for the Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s (VHP) Dharam Sabha to push for a Ram Temple at the disputed site. The rally is also the setting for a battle of Hindutva perception against the Shiv Sena with Uddhav Thackeray warning that the BJP may not come to power if it goes back on mandir promise.

The temple town has turned into a fortress for the Dharam Sabha, which the saffron outfit claims will be attended by more than 3 lakh Lord Ram ‘devotees’. Praant Sangathan mantra (Awadh) of VHP Bholendra had in a written statement said this was the final Dharam Sabha for the construction of Ram temple. "After this, no more Dharam Sabhas will be held and the construction of the temple will commence," he said.
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Nov 25, 2018 6:05 pm (IST)

Justice delayed is justice denied, said RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat on the issue of Ram mandir at a rally in Nagpur.  

Nov 25, 2018 5:44 pm (IST)

BJP’s lawmaker in UP Surendera Singh attacked the Shiv Sena for its stand on Ram temple saying that those who don’t serve humanity cannot serve Lord Ram.  "The people who thrash north Indians and drive them out, who don't even have the mentality to serve humanity, how will they serve lord Ram?" he said.

Nov 25, 2018 5:38 pm (IST)

Terming VHP's "Dharm Sabha" and visit of Shiv Sena President Uddhav Thackerey to Ayodhya an open "challenge" to Supreme Court, All India Muslim Personal law Board (AIMPLB) Sunday said a situation is being created against the Muslims. "It is not the matter of giving a mosque but its a matter of principle that how many mosques will we have to sacrifice gradually. If we talk to someone, it will withdraw and another one will come.  "Sri Sri Ravishankar had offered that we should construct a big mosque outside Ayodhya. But later he cornered himself. Just imagine, what had happened, we entered into an agreement with him," AIMPLB General Secretary Maulana Wali Rehmani said while talking to PTI. "VHP's dharm sansad and visit of Thackerey and similar such programmes, a situation is being created against Muslims and its also an open challenge to the judiciary (SC)," he said.

Nov 25, 2018 5:21 pm (IST)

CLICK TO READ | No Power Without Mandir: Uddhav's Ultimatum to BJP After Prayers at Disputed Ram Lalla Site

Taking a dig at the BJP, Uddhav Thackeray says parties chant 'Ram, Ram' before elections, and do only 'aaram' after that.

Nov 25, 2018 5:21 pm (IST)

Noting that Lok Sabha elections are around the corner and only one session of Parliament remains, he asked the government to bring an ordinance. "Shiv Sena has been supporting (them) on the issue of Hindutva and will continue to do so. Bring ordinance or a law but construct temple... the emotions of Hindus should not be taken for granted," he told reporters here

Nov 25, 2018 5:20 pm (IST)

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said the BJP government at the Centre "may not last" if the Ram Temple is not constructed at Ayodhya and demanded that an ordinance be brought in, warning that emotions of Hindus should not be taken for granted. The Shiv Sena chief, who offered prayers at the Ram Lalla temple, said "Days, years and generations are passing by but the temple has not been constructed".

Nov 25, 2018 5:09 pm (IST)

CLICK TO READ | No Ram Mandir, Bhim Army Chief Chandrashekhar Demands Buddha Temple in Ayodhya

The Dalit activist told News18 that he will carry with him a copy of the Constitution and present it to the District Magistrate, requesting him to follow his constitutional duty.

Nov 25, 2018 5:08 pm (IST)

The dharma sabha venue, which witnessed saffron hue all the way with flags, banners, buntings and head gear in the same colour, also saw the Ram Bhakts taking a pledge for construction of Ram temple, vowing by taking the soil of Ayodhya in their hands. Religious leader Ram Bhadracharya  said: "On November 23, I had called a senior union minister who assured that after the model code of conduct comes to an end on December 11, the PM is likely to sit with them and take such a decision so that Ram temple could be built." "We were also told we will not be cheated and I feel that ordinance route may be opted in the winter session of Parliament. We should exercise patience... We have been saddened by the court (nyayalaya se niraash ho chuke hai). The court of people will not deceive us" he stressed. Once Ram temple is built it will become a "ghoshit Hindu raashtra", he told the gathering.

Nov 25, 2018 4:52 pm (IST)

The dharam Sabha, the biggest congregation of Ram bhakts in the temple town convened to discuss the way forward for temple construction, witnessed seer after seer stressing the need for construction of the temple at the earliest. Nritya Gopaldas, President of the Ram Janmbhoomi Nyas, in his address said: "Such a large attendance shows that how much people from different walks of life are attached to the Ram temple. "We respect the courts. We have great hopes from Prime Minister Narendra Modi and UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. I request Adityanath to pave the way for construction of Ram temple", he said making a call to the government to do the needful in this regard at the earliest.

Nov 25, 2018 4:51 pm (IST)

Amidst growing demand for construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya without further delay, Ramji Das of Nirmohi Akhara told VHP's dharam sabha that dates for the same will be announced early next year during Kumbh in Prayagraj. Addressing the sabha after the inauguration marked by chanting of mantras at the Badey Bhaktmaal ki Bagia, Ramji Das said:"The date for construction of the Ram temple will be declared in the 2019 Kumbh which will be held in Prayagraj".  "It is only a matter of few days, and I request you all to show some patience," the seer remarked.

Nov 25, 2018 4:41 pm (IST)

Posters of VHP's 'Dharam Sabha' and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray's programme in Ayodhya are splashed across the streets of the temple town, and many religious 'akharas' have turned into debating venues to discuss the issue of Ram temple.The 'Dharam Sabha' is being touted as the largest congregation of 'Ram bhakts' in Ayodhya since the 1992 'kar seva'. The congregation on Sunday is being held less than two weeks before the 26th anniversary of the demolition of the 16th century Babri Mosque, that had triggered unrest in this town and riots in other parts of India. Hordes of activists of both the VHP and the Shiv Sena, who have gathered here from various parts of the country, bear saffron flags and chant 'Jai Shri Ram'. In the background posters with images of Lord Ram and the slogan 'Chalo Ayodhya' dot the roads.

Nov 25, 2018 4:33 pm (IST)

Supporters participate in `Dharam Sabha’, being organised by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad to push for the construction of the Ram temple, in Ayodhya, Sunday, Nov. 25, 2018. (PTI Photo)

Nov 25, 2018 4:31 pm (IST)

Chandrashekhar also said that UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath should "consider renaming Ayodhya" too as names of places are being changed.  

Nov 25, 2018 4:28 pm (IST)

"Remains of Lord Buddha Found in Ayodhya" | Chief of Bhim Army Chandrashekhar has said that the idol of Lord Buddha should be installed in Ayodhya as his remains were found during excavations at the site.He also said that during Lord Buddha's time Ayodhya was known as Saket Pradesh.

Nov 25, 2018 4:21 pm (IST)

Maharashtra chief minister Fadnavis has said that Ram temple is not a political issue.  "Shri Ram is the deity for entire India, Thackeray would get his blessings too," Fadnavis told reporters at Karad in Maharashtra's Satara district. 

Nov 25, 2018 4:00 pm (IST)

"We met the governor and handed over a memorandum to him asking him to look into the build-up in the past couple of days with thousands of people reaching Ayodhya, where prohibitory orders are already in force," Yadav told reporters. The PSP leader, accompanied by his party workers, walked to the Raj Bhavan here from his party office. Yadav said he urged the governor to ensure that the law and order is maintained at all costs so that a repeat of what happened in 1992 is avoided. A frenzied group of 'kar sewaks' (right-wing activists) had razed the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya on December 6, 1992, triggering riots.

Nov 25, 2018 3:58 pm (IST)

As devotees poured in Ayodhya on Sunday to attend the VHP's 'Dharam Sabha', Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party (Lohia) (PSP) chief Shivpal Singh Yadav submitted a memorandum to Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik urging him to maintain law and order in the state. The Vishva Hindu Group (VHP), a right-wing group, has called for a public meeting in Ayodhya to press for the construction of a Ram temple in the holy town which is considered to be Lord Ram's birthplace.

Nov 25, 2018 3:58 pm (IST)

As devotees poured in Ayodhya on Sunday to attend the VHP's 'Dharam Sabha', Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party (Lohia) (PSP) chief Shivpal Singh Yadav submitted a memorandum to Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik urging him to maintain law and order in the state. The Vishva Hindu Group (VHP), a right-wing group, has called for a public meeting in Ayodhya to press for the construction of a Ram temple in the holy town which is considered to be Lord Ram's birthplace.

Nov 25, 2018 3:18 pm (IST)

PM Modi on Ayodhya Issue | "The Congress creates an atmosphere of fear for the judiciary when the court hears the Ayodhya issue. They do everything possible to impeach the Chief Justice. How can such things be accepted," PM Modi said. in what was seen as a reference to the opposition bid to start impeachment proceedings against former Chief Justice Dipak Misra earlier this year.

Nov 25, 2018 3:13 pm (IST)

Maharashtra BJP chief Raosaheb Danve said the Shiv Sena's stand on the construction of Ram temple supports the BJP and asserted that both the parties will jointly contest the next year's state and general polls. "It is not like the Sena has backed the BJP recently, but we have been together for decades," Danve told reporters in Jalna district. The Sena has demanded that an ordinance be brought before 2019 for constructing the temple. Dashing it aside, Danve said, "The dispute related to temple or mosque is in court. Hence, despite being in power there are limitations to what a government can do." One has to coin some slogans while undertaking an activity like visiting Ayodhya, "which does not mean we have severe differences with each other", said the Lok Sabha member from Jalna constituency. "To avoid division of votes, the Sena is going to be our partner for the general and assembly elections," he said. The Sena had said earlier that it will fight all the upcoming elections solo. 

Nov 25, 2018 3:12 pm (IST)

Ram temple is not a political issue, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said Sunday and expressed hope that Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, who is in Ayodhya, would get the blessings of Lord Ram. A senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader also said that the Sena, which is its ally at the Centre and in Maharashtra, will remain its partner for the Maharashtra and the Lok Sabha polls due next year. Thackeray, who offered prayers at the Ram Lalla temple in Ayodhya on Sunday, said the BJP government at the Centre "may not last" if Ram temple is not constructed in the Uttar Pradesh city, and demanded that an ordinance be brought to pave for its way. "The construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya is not a political issue. Shri Ram is the deity for entire India, Thackeray would get his blessings too," Fadnavis told reporters at Karad in Maharashtra's Satara district. He was speaking after paying tributes at the memorial of late Y B Chavan, the state's first chief minister. Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar also paid floral tributes to Chavan in Karad along with senior leaders of the party from the region.

Nov 25, 2018 3:11 pm (IST)

VHP's 'dharma Sabha" commenced in the temple town Sunday afternoon with senior leader Champat Rai declaring that no formula dividing the disputed land will be acceptable for temple construction. Addressing the sabha after the inauguration marked by chanting of mantras and lighting of lamp, the international general secretary Champat Rai said "we want the entire land for temple construction...no formula dividing the land is acceptable." Though Rai did not spell out the details, his assertions are considered to be in reference to the Allahabad High court verdict dividing the land into three parts. The Allahabad High Court had ruled by a majority verdict that the disputed land in Ayodhya be divided equally into three parts among Hindus and Muslims and that the place where the makeshift temple of Lord Ram exists belongs to Hindus.

Nov 25, 2018 2:09 pm (IST)

Taking a jibe at construction of statues undertaken by the Bharatiya Janata Party government, former Supreme Court Justice Markandey Katju said that the competition to build the tallest statue will soon lead India to the outer space. His statement came after UP government official announced that Lord Ram's bronze statue will soon come up in Ayodhya.

Nov 25, 2018 1:56 pm (IST)

Shivpal Yadav Approaches UP Governor Over Ayodhya Dispute | Founder of Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party (Lohia), Shivpal Yadav, meets Governor Ram Naik and asks him to suspend UP government if it fails to maintain communal harmony.

Nov 25, 2018 1:50 pm (IST)

Update on Security in Ayodhya | ADG (law and order) Anand Kumar says that Ayodhya has been divided into zones. "Security scheme has been implemented. Red zone and yellow zone are two main security zones. State government, state police and administration are committed to uphold the directions by the Supreme Court and High Court," he said. 

Nov 25, 2018 12:59 pm (IST)

How Can People Who Thrash North Indians Serve Lord Ram?: BJP MLA | Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Surendra Singh has asked how did Shiv Sena 'hijack' Ram Mandir issue. "The people who thrash north Indians and drive them out, who don’t even have the mentality to serve humanity, how will they serve Lord Ram?" Singh asks.

Nov 25, 2018 12:39 pm (IST)

Congress on Ayodhya dispute and Shiv Sena's Rally | Congress leader in Lok Sabha M Mallikarjun Kharge said that parties are going to Ayodhya due to elections. "Who stopped Uddhav Thackeray from going there in past 4-5 yrs? On one hand, they're friends with BJP and on the other, they want to tell people they're interested in constructing Ram Temple and are putting pressure on the government. People won't be befooled," he said.

Nov 25, 2018 12:06 pm (IST)

VHP's Kicks Off Ram Temple Meet in Ayodhya | Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP)'s national vice-president Champat Rai begin addressing gathering in Ayodhya over Ram Temple issue. The sabha is presided by RSS Sarkaryawah Krishna Gopal. "The mobilisation you see today, is just from 45 districts of Uttar Pradesh. Some intelligent people of this country need to be reminded that issue of Ram temple didn't end on December 6, 1992," Rai says.

Nov 25, 2018 12:01 pm (IST)

VHP's Kicks Off Ram Temple Meet in Ayodhya | Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP)'s national vice-president Champat Rai begin addressing gathering in Ayodhya over Ram Temple issue. The sabha is presided by RSS Sarkaryawah Krishna Gopal. "The mobilisation you see today, is just from 45 districts of Uttar Pradesh. Some intelligent people of this country need to be reminded that issue of Ram temple didn't end on December 6, 1992," Rai says.

Nov 25, 2018 11:22 am (IST)

Had Balasaheb Been Alive, He Would Have Stopped Uddhav Thackeray: UP Dy CM | Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya on Sunday disapproved of the Shiv Sena's push for constructing a Ram temple here, saying the party had no role in the temple movement. Maurya's remarks came a day after Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray asked the BJP-led NDA government to declare a date for the construction of the Ram temple. "There is no problem in Uddhav Thackeray catching a glimpse of Ram Lalla... But, had Balasaheb Thackeray been alive, he would have prevented Uddhav from doing whatever he is doing, Maurya told PTI on the phone. The Shiv Sena had no role in the temple movement or even in the Dharam Sabha, though Balasaheb Thackeray would support the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, he said. He said Uddhav Thackeray should take the VHP, "which is leading such a large-scale movement, along with his party. There is no point creating a divide". The deputy chief minister, who was part of the VHP during the Ram temple movement, said, The devotees of Lord Ram know who can actually make a sacrifice now and who had made a sacrifice earlier.

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Ayodhya LIVE: With a Fistful of Soil, VHP Administers 'Ram Temple Oath' to Dharam Sabha Attendees

Day before the Dharam Sabha, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray dared the Narendra Modi government to declare a date for the construction of the temple, saying it was time for the government to “wake up from a Kumbhakarna-like slumber”.

The Supreme Court on November 12 had declined early hearing of petitions in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title dispute case and listed the matter for January 2019. Earlier, a three-judge bench, by a 2:1 majority, refused to refer to a five-judge Constitution Bench the issue of reconsideration of the observations in its 1994 judgment of the Allahabad High Court that a mosque was not integral to Islam. The matter had arisen during the hearing of the Ayodhya land dispute.

A UP Police spokesperson said one additional DGP, one deputy inspector general (DIG), three senior superintendents of police (SSPs), 10 additional SPs, 21 deputy SPs, 160 inspectors, 700 constables, 42 companies of PAC, five companies of RAF, ATS commandos and drones have been deployed in Ayodhya.

When contacted, Ayodhya mayor Rishikesh Upadhyay told PTI that adequate security arrangements were made by the police and district administration in the town, located 120 km from state capital, Lucknow. "As many as 13 parking slots have been provided for the event. No permission was given to the Shiv Sena by the government to hold a rally," the mayor said.

Despite a slight chill in the air, the temple town seems to be reeling under the political heat generated by the 'Dharam Sabha', being held to call for the construction of a grand temple for Lord Ram. A pamphlet recently released by the VHP raises the pitch for its construction. It reads "Saugandh Ram ki khaate hai, hum mandir bhavya banayenge (We pledge in the name of Lord Ram that we will build a grand temple for him)" and urges devotees to be a part of the movement.

Vishva Hindu Parishad was founded on August 29, 1964 on the auspicious day of Shri Krishna Janmasthami. Its objective is to organise, consolidate the Hindu society and serve, protect the Hindu Dharma. VHP media in-charge Ambuj Ojha said, "After staying in a 'taat' (tent), Lord Ram is expecting a revival of bravado among his devotees. The moment has come. The temple must be built where Ram Lalla is currently seated. Also, there should not be any mosque in the cultural boundary of Ayodhya."

On November 18, the VHP had organised a motorcycle rally in different parts of Lucknow in this regard.
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