New Delhi | Home Minister Amit Shah asserted on Saturday that Prime Minister Narendra Modi took all sections of society along on the Ram temple issue and described the Supreme Court verdict on the matter as a reflection of India's secular character to the world.
Speaking in Lok Sabha during a discussion on the construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya and the consecration ceremony on January 22, he said that in no other country has the majority community waited for so long for a matter related to its faith.
He lauded all those who participated in the long struggle on various fronts on the Ram temple issue. The Supreme Court verdict on the Ram temple showed India's secular character to the world, Shah said.
People's struggle for constructing the Ram temple in Ayodhya began in 1528 and the legal battle fought for it started in 1858, he said, adding that it all came to an end on January 22 which rejuvenated India's faith and marked the beginning of the journey of a great India.
The temple's construction is the journey from struggle to devotion, from chanting 'Jai Shri Ram' to 'Jai Sia Ram', he said while heaping praise on Modi for his leadership and the arduous religious discipline he subjected himself for 11 days in the run-up to the ceremony.
Critics used to mock the BJP over its promises alleging they were driven by electoral exigencies, he said, asserting that the Modi government banned triple talaq as well and fulfilled many other commitments.
The BJP and its leader Modi do what they say, he said.
Stating that India's culture cannot be separated from Ramayana, Shah said over 300 years long struggle ended with the inauguration of Ram Mandir.
"The date of January 22 marks the beginning of the journey of great India. This day paves the way for Maa Bharti (mother India) to take us on the path of becoming Vishwaguru (world leader).
"It was a day that marked the hopes, aspirations and accomplishments of crores of devotees," Shah said, adding that the Ram Mandir is a sign of cultural rejuvenation.
Shah said the journey that started on January 22 will be carried forward and expressed confidence that the Modi government will come back to power in 2024 after the general elections.
The Ram Mandir has been built following legal and constitutional mandate, Shah said, adding that the BJP kept its patience and the Ram Temple was built in Ayodhya in a "harmonious environment".
No political slogans were raised at the consecration ceremony, Shah said, adding, "I say with folded hands that accept the message of unity and move forward." Addressing critics, he said they should accept the overwhelming popular sentiment on the issue and not vitiate the atmosphere of joy and devotion.
Remembering BJP veteran L K Advani's contribution with his 'Rath Yatra', he said it acted as an awakening for people and Modi during his tenure finally fulfilled their aspirations.