View From The Right: Beware the corridorhttps://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/kartarpur-corridor-ram-temple-controversy-narendra-modi-rajasthan-elections-5478718/

View From The Right: Beware the corridor

The customary mention of ‘Kashmir’ as an outstanding issue by Imran Khan on this pious occasion further underscores the intent,” the editorial interprets.

View From The Right: Beware the corridor
At the peak of the Khalistan movement, the same Gurdwara Sahib of Kartarpur, along with the Nankana Sahib, was used by Pakistan as the base to support the Khalistani movement. (File)

The editorial in Organiser on the opening of the Kartarpur corridor between “Bharat” and Pakistan cautions that while the development should be welcomed as a religious initiative, multiple factors should guide its actual execution. It claims that it was during former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s Lahore initiative that Akali leader Prakash Singh Badal flagged the issue and formally requested access to the Kartarpur shrine. “Pakistan did not consider it then. [That] We received Kargil in return is a known fact. Why Pakistan suddenly agreed to this proposal is not even a matter of guess (sic). Amidst the growing isolation at the international level, this is a face-saving attempt for the economically dwindling neighbour. This again should not turn out to be a sinister attempt to deviate attention,” the editorial asserts.

It goes on to read the presence of Pakistan Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, along with the pro-Khalistani elements during the ground-breaking ceremony on the Pakistan side as a “dangerous sign”. “We have witnessed a blast in the Nirankari Samagam in Amritsar recently… At the peak of the Khalistan movement, the same Gurdwara Sahib of Kartarpur, along with the Nankana Sahib, was used by Pakistan as the base to support the Khalistani movement. The customary mention of ‘Kashmir’ as an outstanding issue by Imran Khan on this pious occasion further underscores the intent,” the editorial interprets. Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu is also a target, and referred to as a “bad team player”.

Time for temple

At a time when the RSS and Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) are holding dharma sabhas and raising demanding that the Centre bring in a legislation or ordinance to facilitate the building of a Ram temple in Ayodhya, the cover story in Organiser takes a different tack. It opines that under Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP, India, at last, has a government that “honours Hindu sentiments”, including festivals, temples and sacred sites.

The article claims that “Hindus feel” that since the government is no longer “against them”, this painful issue (Ram temple) can finally be “resolved in their favour. “Strong opposition to the Ram Temple remains in India, not just from other religious groups and the Marxist left, but from other political parties up to the Congress (sic), which are at best ambivalent about the issue and are afraid it will give more power to the BJP for it to build a Ram temple,” the article conjectures and adds that resolving the Ayodhya dispute would require special legislation since the courts refuse to rule decisively on it. The article then describes the modalities of how to go about such an action: The Modi government, along with the help of the BJP state government under Yogi Adityanath in Uttar Pradesh and a BJP-supported President Ram Nath Kovind, has the power and the legal option to get an ordinance through, should they deem it wise or necessary. Such an option “did not exist in previous governments or even in the Modi government before the UP and presidential election victories,” the article asserts and adds that the Modi government can also claim that the courts have had ample time to deal with the case if their intentions were certain.
“Whether Hindus will get another chance of this type is questionable, as politics in India is changeable and such control over all the necessary seats of power is difficult to achieve. That is why Hindus are so adamant that a new Ram Mandir comes up in Ayodhya now and no further waiting occurs,” the article claims.

The tallest leader

As Rajasthan goes to polls this week, an article in Organiser claims that though poll-pundits have predicted a Congress come-back in Rajasthan — citing anti-incumbency and previous trend of alternate governments in the state every five-years — the huge turnout at the prime minister’s rally and his ability to galvanise the electorate tells a different story. The article claims that with the voting day approaching, “Modi magic continues to enchant voters” with the PM’s “exceptional oratory skills and those attending his gatherings have agreed on the fact that ‘Modi Magic will bring Saffron wave again in the desert state’”. “A huge turnout at his rallies, with people chanting Modi, Modi! speaks the story of the leader who stands tall among his opponents, standing united to make him fall, but the exceptional charm of this man makes him a mass leader, the story claims. “No matter if he is in Bhilwara, Kota, Dungarpur or Bharatpur, his steady presence is managing to turn the desert land into Saffron land,” the article says. It justifies the rhetoric with an example that on November 28, PM Modi was in Bharatpur where he wooed voters with his graceful yet an active address.

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