Sangh sees red over demolition of 100 temples in Jaipur


A temple is being demolished by the authorities to make way for the Metro rail project in Jaipur.

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) seems to have woken up to a reality: demolition of temples in Jaipur by the state government. About 100 big and small temples, some as old as Jaipur, were demolished to facilitate construction of the metro railway and vehicular traffic here. And the Sangh is clearly not happy about it.

Visibly perturbed over the adverse public perception, state leaders of the Sangh and its affiliate socio-cultural bodies, including the Vishva Hindu Parishad and the Hindu Jagran Manch, met over the weekend at Bharti Bhawan, the state RSS headquarters, and came out with a call for a two-hour long ‘chakka jam’ (traffic blockade) from 9 am to 11 am on July 9. Meanwhile, BJP’s joint generalsecretary V Satish was in Jaipur to discuss this development with party’s state leadership on Monday. A technical committee of RSS office bearers on Sunday and Monday surveyed the destruction of the city’s old temples and heritage. The fact-finding report – incorporating details of the demolished temples and damaged idols that were shifted under a roof, and the allurements allegedly offered to the priests of various temples – would be sent to the national headquarters of RSS at Nagpur, sources said. The report would also mention the objectionable roles played by the government officials involved and silence of the elected representatives over the “operation demolition”.

The RSS leadership on Saturday had summoned all the nine BJP legislators of the city, including state BJP president Ashok Parnami, three Cabinet ministers – Education Minister Kali Charan Saraf, Social Justice & Empowerment Minister Arun Chaturvedi and Urban Development Minister Raj-By Sudhanshu Mishra in Jaipur some temples force was used against the protesters and arrests were made, they pointed out. Meanwhile, former Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot took a dig at RSS leadership and called it a “drama staged jointly by the RSS-BJP”. “Had there been the Congress government and a single temple was touched in this manner they (RSS-BJP) would have protested like anything and communal riots would have been ignited,” he commented. “Waking up after a deep slumber they (RSS leadership) have come after everything has taken place. Where were they when the temples were being demolished?” he said.

Earlier, at a meeting of senior RSS leaders and various sociocultural frontal organisations of the Sangh at the Bharti Bhawan, the action plan was prepared in the presence of Kshetriya Pracharak Durgadas and Prant Pracharak Shiv Lehari. Heads of various organisations pointed out that the demolition of large number of temples had tarnished the image of the Sangh Parivar. It was the general consensus that if no protest was organised it would be difficult to face the general public. It was pointed out at the meeting that temples continued to be destroyed despite memorandums submitted to the government, local legislators, MP and ministers, VHP representatives pointed out. It was decided at the meeting that the elected representatives of BJP would be kept at arm’s length during the protest under the banner of the Hindu Jagran Manch. The protest would be manned only by the swayamsevaks, office bearers of all RSS shakhas in Jaipur, activists of the affiliate organisations, and other bodies.

Source: India