NATIONAL

VHP's plans will not hit NDA Government: Venkaiah

CHENNAI, JAN. 31. The senior BJP leader and Union Minister for Rural Development, M. Venkaiah Naidu, today said he ``totally disagreed'' with the Vishwa Hindu Parishad's statement that they were willing to sacrifice the NDA Government at the Centre for the Ayodhya issue.

``The VHP is not part of the Vajpayee Government. And, the Government will not be affected by the statements,'' he told the media here.

Though the BJP too was ``eager'' that the Ram temple be constructed at Ayodhya, Mr. Naidu said the party was for either a settlement through the courts or negotiations.

As for the VHP's threat of beginning the construction by March, he said the Vajpayee Government would not allow anyone to take law into their hands. ``The rule of law will be upheld. And whatever is required will be done in the issue.'' The VHP's plans would not cause any crisis to the NDA Government and if it ``causes an embarrassment, we know how to tackle it,'' he said.

To a question, Mr. Naidu asserted that there was no mosque at the disputed site at Ayodhya and it was only a ``disputed structure''.

Lashing out at the Congress and Left parties for ``trying to create a communal frenzy'' by repeatedly raising the Ayodhya issue in Parliament, he said, regardless of the Opposition tirade, the Government was pursuing its ``development agenda''.

On reports that Pakistan had named the Home Minister, L.K. Advani, in the list of terrorists it wanted India to hand over to the country, Mr. Naidu said it was ``childish'' and smacked of ``juvenile delinquency''. Pakistan should realise that it was ``dealing with the Home Minister of India who is leading an effective campaign against terrorism''.

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