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Home > News > PTI

BJP wants Muslim help in building Ram temple

March 07, 2007 19:30 IST

Ahead of assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, the Bharatiya Janata Party on Wednesday raked up the Ram temple issue asking Muslims to take the initiative in building the temple in Ayodhya but admitted a majority of Muslims did not support the party.

Party chief Rajnath Singh told a gathering of Muslims here that his party was committed to its ideology and would keep opposing any move aimed at religion-based reservations.

"We want a Ram Temple there. It is a matter of our faith. Muslims should take initiative towards that goal," Singh said as party's Minority Morcha president Shahnawaz Hussain took charge.

In a candid admission, the BJP president acknowledged that his party does not enjoy support of a majority of Muslims in the country.

He, however, blamed the Congress for the poor economic and educational conditions of the community, citing more than 50-year rule in the country.

Singh said his party opposed recommendations of the Sachar Committee on Muslims, insisting they aimed to create a wedge in society on grounds of religion.

The RSS-backed BJP chief, who replaced senior party leader L K Advani after his controversial Jinnah comments in 2005, has received praise from Sangh mouthpiece 'Organiser' for the organisation's electoral performance in Punjab and Uttarakhand.

The BJP believes it has been able to win back Hindu support, especially in urban region, because of its clear opposition to ruling UPA's "minority appeasement" move.

Singh, however, recalled the then prime minister A B Vajpayee's first trip to Lahore and his peace initiatives with Pakistan, claiming that the moves showed the BJP's unbiased political thought.

He also referred to the election of A P J Abdul Kalam as president during the NDA rule.

"We did not select the president on the grounds of religion. We wanted a competent man and we found it in Kalam," he said.

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