Ayodhya: Kerala MP red flags Kamal Nath, Digivijay’s remarks

Can’t chase extreme religious nationalism with softer prototype, he says

Published - August 06, 2020 02:10 pm IST - New Delhi

In a sign of discomfort within the Congress on the Ram temple issue, Lok Sabha member from Thrissur T.N. Prathappan, in a letter to party president Sonia Gandhi, has protested against Madhya Pradesh leaders - Kamal Nath and Digvijay Singh’s statements on the issue.

In the two-page long letter, Mr. Prathappan warned against pedalling soft Hindutva. He said the Congress must not exclude a sizeable demographic people who grieve the demolition of Babri Masjid, which was a like an attack on their own conscience.

“We can’t chase an extreme religious nationalism with its soft prototype. We need to realise this situation and should accept an alternative, immediately,” he said.

Both Mr. Nath and Mr. Singh, while welcoming the construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya, claimed that it was former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi who first moved in this direction when he opened the doors of Ram Janmabhoomi in 1985. Mr. Nath also held a recitation of Hanuman Chalisa at his Bhopal residence and announced that the State Congress unit would send 11 silver bricks to Ayodhya for the temple.

Mr. Singh, meanwhile, complained that leaders from other political parties were not invited for the ‘bhumi pujan’.

Countering this, Mr. Prathapan questioned the statement, saying, “I think that this particular event is a Sangh Parivar sponsored ‘Religious Political’ one. If we are not invited to this, why would our leaders beg for that?”

‘Statements disappointing’

Calling both Mr. Nath and Mr. Singh’s statements disappointing, Mr Prathapan wrote that there were a million people who “grieve” the demolition of Babari Masjid while they accepted the court verdict. “The demolition was a kind of attack to their conscience. We can’t leave them in a despair,” he said.

Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra had also welcomed the construction of Ram temple .

Mr. Prathapan, doing a balancing act, said her position wishing unity in the form of a Ram temple was “ acceptable”. “We certainly know that such unity wouldn’t be there as far as Sangh Parivar has power. Ultimately, what matters is not the failures we face but not bowing low for the temporary successes”, he added.

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