Reacting to AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi's statement on PM Modi's Ayodhya visit for Ram Mandir's Bhoomi Pujan, BJP spokesperson Nalin Kohli, on Tuesday, said that it was unfortunate that Owaisi was always stirring controversy on Ram Mandir. He added that Owaisi's constant politicisation of religion was unfortunate. The Bhoomi-Pujan for the 'long-awaited' Ram Mandir will be performed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Ayodhya on August 5.
"It is unfortunate that Owaisi keeps creating a controversy over Ram Mandir. It feels like he always wants to politicise religion. Is it right to do so? Only Owaisiji can say," said Kohli.
Earlier in the day, Owaisi said that PM Modi must avoid attending the event in a professional capacity as he was head of a secular nation. He said that the event must not be telecasted and if PM Modi attended as the Prime Minister of India. While he ceded that the PM had the freedom to practise any religion, his presence will send the message that he supported one faith.
"It is better that PM Modi not attend that event. If he attends that function, a message will be sent to the nation that he is supporting people of one faith. Agreed that any Prime Minister has the freedom to practice any faith, but PM Modi is a constitutional head and he is linked to the basic structure of the secular Constitution. If he wishes to go, he must go in an individual capacity and not live telecast the event," said Owaisi to ANI.
Previously, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said that Bhoomi Poojan at Ayodhya Ram Temple can be conducted through video-conference in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, in an interview with Shiv Sena mouthpiece Saamana. Both of Thackeray's allies - NCP and Congress too had opposed the Bhoomi pujan held on August 5 amid the Coronavirus pandemic. Congress had reminded PM Modi that former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru had not attended the Bhoomi puja of the Somnath temple as he was the leader of a secular nation.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone of the Ram Temple slated to be built in Ayodhya on August 5. The Ram Janmabhoomi Tirtha Kshetra has invited 150 guests - including Shiv Sena Supremo Uddhav Thackeray, BJP veterans L K Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Home Minister Amit Shah and social distancing norms will be followed. The trust has estimated that construction of the temple will be completed in 3-3.5 years i.e by 2023- the year of the Uttar Pradesh State polls. Approximately, 200 people will attend the event.