The BJP on Monday made its first official statement on the Kashi Vishwanath Temple-Gyanvapi mosque dispute, saying such issues would be settled in accordance with the Constitution and decided by the courts. BJP president J P Nadda said the party has always spoken about cultural development, and would follow the order of the court in letter and spirit.
“We have always been talking about cultural development. But these issues are dealt with in accordance with the Constitution and the ruling of courts. So, the Court and Constitution will decide on it and the BJP will follow it in letter and spirit,” Nadda told reporters on the eve of the eighth anniversary of the Narendra Modi government at the Centre.
Responding to questions on whether reclaiming the temples at Kashi and Mathura were on the agenda of the BJP, Nadda said that the Ram Janmabhoomi issue was part of the resolution passed in the party’s national executive in Palampur, but “after that there has been no resolution.”
Following the Palampur resolution of June 1989, the BJP had taken up the Ram Janmabhoomi movement — which had been carried out by the VHP until then — as part of its political agenda. L K Advani had announced a Rath Yatra to ensure that “a temple is constructed at the birthplace of Lord Ram”.
Speaking separately, a top government functionary said on Monday evening that the BJP has not said “anything” on the Kashi and Mathura disputes, and would go with whatever the courts decide. Asked about the party’s stance on Kashi and Mathura in the backdrop of ongoing litigation, the government functionary said that people may have different views, “but BJP as a party has not said anything on this”.
“We cannot stop people from interpreting the law the way they want,” the functionary said. “We will go with the decision of the courts.”
At the press conference, Nadda said the BJP is ready to take everyone along in building a strong nation, and rejected suggestions that a section of people feel alienated under the Modi government.
“When we work politically, it is our endeavour to take everyone along. We have to be ready for it. We are ready for it,” Nadda said. “There are many types of people in a society. Some respond earlier, some later, some after decades and some respond after much time has passed. It depends on them. But our conduct is on the principle of a strong nation, one nation. This is clear and everyone will have an equal share.”
He said that the Modi government functions on the principle of “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vishwas, Sabka Prayaas”.
On the Uttarakhand government forming a committee on formulating a Uniform Civil Code, Nadda said: “It is okay. They (Uttarakhand) are discussing it. As far as we are concerned, we have been saying that everyone must be treated equally. Our broad outline is justice to all, appeasement of none. This is our basic principle, we are working in accordance with it.”
The Modi government, Nadda said, has changed India’s political culture and ushered in a responsive, responsible and proactive government. “Seva, sushasan and garib kalyan (service, good governance, and welfare of poor)” are the soul of the Modi government, Nadda, who was flanked by Union ministers Smriti Irani, Dharmendra Pradhan, and Anurag Thakur, said.
The BJP released a theme song titled “Modi government architect of new India”, which highlights the construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya and the Kashi Vishwanath corridor in Varanasi, and offers a glimpse of the Krishna Janmabhoomi temple in Mathura. A new module of the NaMo App was also launched to “take the youth through innovation and make them aware of the works done by the government for them”.
Asked about the challenges the government has faced in the eight years, Nadda said: “First of all, the culture of India has changed and we have brought in last-mile delivery in the governance process. The biggest challenge was to see that the policies were implemented in letter and spirit. Modi himself has taken care of this – for which he had to shake the system and that process has disturbed many.”
According to Nadda, both the pandemic and the Ukraine war created problems, but the government managed to keep the growth rate intact, which also took care of the issue of unemployment.