Senior CPI(M) leader Brinda Karat, on December 26, said her party would skip the grand consecration ceremony of the Ram mandir in Ayodhya on January 22. CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury is among the Opposition leaders invited to the event next year.
Defending the decision to give the grand consecration ceremony, which is to be headlined by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a miss, the veteran Left leader said her party doesn’t subscribe to combining religion with politics and neither does it stand for the ‘politicisation’ of a religious event.
“Our party will not attend the ‘Pran Pratishtha’ ceremony of the Ram mandir in Ayodhya. We respect the religious sentiments of the people but they (BJP) are combining religion with politics. This is an attempt to politicise a religious programme. This is not right,” Brinda Karat, a member of the CPI(M)’s Politburo, told ANI on December 25.
"यह एक धार्मिक कार्यक्रम का राजनीतिकरण है"
— News24 (@news24tvchannel) December 26, 2023
“Using religion as a political weapon or for advancing a political agenda is not right,” she added. “It is not right what these people are doing, it’s purely political,” the former Rajya Sabha MP said.
“Politics and religion must be separated and kept at a distance. Mixing them only advances the RSS agenda. When religion is used is a political weapon or a tool to advance an idea or agenda, it loses respect,” Brinda Karat added.
On whether the CPI(M) was boycotting the event, the veteran Left leader said, “There is no question of boycott. We have an understanding that using a religious function as a political weapon isn’t right.”
Yechury recently received a formal invite from the chairman of Ayodhya Ram Mandir Construction Committee, Nripendra Misra, for the consecration ceremony.
He is one among several top Opposition leaders, including former Congress president Sonia Gandhi, to have received an invitation to attend the grand mandir opening.
The Trust has also invited Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and the party’s leader in the Lok Sabha, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, to the event. The attendance of senior Congress leaders has not yet been confirmed by the party.
The ceremony scheduled for January 22 will witness the installation of the idol of Ram Lalla at the mandir temple. It is expected to be attended by hundreds of officials, including the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The Trust has also invited 4,000 saints of all sects for the ceremony.
Ahead of the consecration ceremony, the Uttaradhikari of Janaki mandir, on the first week of January, will take offerings locally called “Bhaar” to Ayodhya as a part of the ritual.
On January 22, one of the three idols, being made from two stones brought from Karnataka and Rajasthan, will be placed inside the sanctorum of the grand temple. The best idol from three stones will be selected in the first week of January for the consecration ceremony.
The Trust has decided to enthrone the idol of Bhagwan Ram at the sanctum sanctorum between noon and 12.45 pm on January 22. Lakshmi Kant Dixit, a Vedic priest, is scheduled to perform the main rituals of the consecration ceremony on the day.
Bolstering the relationship between Janakpur and Ayodhya with the construction of the Ram mandir in Ayodhya will further strengthen ties between Ayodhya and Janakpur, the heir of Janaki mandir, Ram Roshan Das, opined earlier.
(with inputs from ANI)