The Congress on Saturday said it respects the Supreme Court verdict in the Ayodhya land dispute and is in favour of construction of a Ram temple there.
The Congress Working Committee chaired by party chief Sonia Gandhi passed the resolution that appealed to all parties concerned and all communities to “abide by the secular values and spirit of fraternity enshrined in the Constitution and to maintain peace and harmony”.
“It is the responsibility of each one of us to reaffirm our tradition of mutual respect and unity among all that has defined our society through the ages,” Congress’s chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said quoting the resolution.
The Congress said it was supportive of Ram temple construction and stated in the affirmative when asked about it.
Party recalls land acquisition in 1993
Welcoming the Supreme Court judgment on the Ayodhya land dispute, the Congress recalled that it was the party which had acquired land for the temple in 1993, but added that it was not a matter of credit or discredit. Surjewala said, “The land acquisition was done in 1993 through the Ayodhya Act by the then Congress government, hinting at Congress’’ role in it.
He asked, shouldn’t former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi be given credit for opening the locks of the disputed site? However, he added, It was during former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi’s tenure when the lock of the disputed site was opened on February 1, 1986 and regular prayers were allowed. Prior to that the site was locked, with a priest allowed once a year for worship, the party said.