Fulfil Ram Mandir promise made to Hindus, Sena tells BJP govt

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Mumbai:The Shiv Sena Thursday welcomed the Centre’s ordinance banning instant triple talaq and asked the government to take a similar route for the construction of Ram temple at Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh.

The government should take steps to fulfil “at least one promise” made to Hindus of the country, keeping their sentiments in mind, the Uddhav Thackeray-led party said.

The Union Cabinet Wednesday approved an ordinance to ban the practice of instant triple talaq. Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said there was a “compelling necessity” to bring the ordinance as instances of ‘talaq-e-biddat’ continued unabated despite the Supreme Court striking it down.

“The government has ensured dawn of freedom in the lives of Muslim women by making triple talaq an offence. Now, it should also ensure rise of the sun of sentiments of Hindus by bugling construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya,” the Sena said in the editorial of party mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.

“Bring an ordinance on Ram temple and fulfil at least one promise made to Hindus,” said the party, which is an ally of the BJP at the Centre and in Maharashtra.

It noted that promises of bringing uniform civil code, repealing Article 370, that gives special status to Jammu and Kashmir, and construction of the Ram temple could not be fulfilled earlier due to compulsions of running a coalition.

“But now you (the BJP) have governments with complete majority at the Centre as well as in Uttar Pradesh. Why the exile of Lord Ram is still not over then?” it asked.

Noting that the contentious Ram temple-Babri mosque land dispute is pending before court, the Sena said let the judiciary take a call on the matter when it wants to, but the government should find a solution to the issue of sentiments of Hindus.

It welcomed the ordinance on triple talaq, but wondered how much acceptability the move would find among those Muslims who are “blinded by religion” and are hardliners.

“But the married Muslim (women), who are helpless on religious grounds, would get a protection cover through the ordinance and they will be freed from the ill practice,” the Marathi daily claimed.

Without naming any party or government, it alleged that no honest efforts were made in India in the past to free Muslim women from such medieval ill practices due to vote bank politics.

“So, the steps taken by the government in this context are really good, but it should not stop there only. The construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya was also promised by those who are claiming credit for banning triple talaq.

“That promise (of the temple) is still unfulfilled…Now the temple should also be constructed (by bringing an ordinance),” the party added.