The Vishwa Hindu Parishad says that Parliament, not the judiciary, is the only route to build the Ram temple at Ayodhya and that the Centre should enact a law in this regard. “We have full faith in the judiciary, but the other group does not have. They are ‘using’ the judiciary to keep the matter pending. This is their conspiracy. They have no respect for the judiciary,” said Surendra Jain, joint general secretary of the VHP.

This week, the Supreme Court refused to defer the final hearing in the Ayodhya title dispute until after the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, on a plea by the Sunni Waqf Board and others, and posted the case for 8 February next year. The Apex Court bench, headed by Chief Justice Deepak Misra, also “prima facie” declined the plea of senior lawyers, including that by Kapil Sibal and Rajiv Dhavan, that the appeals be either referred to a five- or a seven-judge bench, keeping in mind the sensitive nature of the case and its ramifications on the country’s secular fabric and polity.  

“We are optimistic that the Centre will move in this direction next year. The BJP already has a majority in the Lok Sabha while the NDA is likely to secure a majority in the Rajya Sabha also next year. Uttar Pradesh is now ruled by the BJP. Such a favourable time will never be there again. The NDA government must pass a legislation in Parliament to build a Ram temple at his birthplace in Ayodhya,” said the VHP leader. 

The senior VHP functionary said: “We are hopeful about it. People say that Prime Minister Narendra Modi could not do anything in this regard in the last three and half years. But we say that one and a half years are still left. His commitment towards building the Ram temple is not less than ours. We hope that he would be able to remove all hurdles and get a legislation passed in Parliament, paving the way for building the Ram temple next year.”

 Nritya Gopal Das, chairman of the Ram Janambhoomi Trust and senior VHP leader, said: “Abhi nahin to kabhi nahin (it is now or never).” 

Jain said: “There have been efforts in the past to resolve the issue through an out-of-court settlement, but these have not yielded any result. Bilateral talks are not enough to pave the way for temple construction. The dispute can only be resolved through Parliamentary legislation.”

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