Is The Reincarnation Of Ayodhya A Draft To ‘Project’ Yogi?
On the banks of Saryu river in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath Yogi celebrated the festival of lights ‘Diwali’ in the most unique manner by lighting up more than 2 lakhs ‘Diyas’ setting a world record.
According to mythological epic, it is believed that Lord Ram, popularly called as ‘Ramlala’ in Ayodhya, was born in the city of Ayodhya and returned to his homeland after the exile of 14 years. The day marked as the festival of Diwali in the country.
CM Yogi’s decision to celebrate Diwali on the land which has always been in news for no reason other than the disputed ‘Ram Mandir-Babri Masjid’ controversy. Yogi in his speech said, “For 70 years, many have been deprived of food, power connections and (are) without a roof above their heads.The Centre and state governments’ efforts at providing them all this is Ram Rajya for them.” However, it came as a surprise as the saffron donned CM kept himself aside from making any comments on the temple issue, but the background seems to be different.”
Yogi now talks development. After appointed as the CM of UP, taking a cue from the former CM of Gujarat Narendra Modi, there have been instances when he appeared to be dissociating himself from the image of ‘communal-religious commentator’, an image which he has donned during his regime as the ‘Mahanth’ of Gorakhnath Temple in Gorakhpur. In the past he had said, “Agar mai sadak par Eid ke din namaz padhne pe rok nahi laga sakta to mujhe koi adhikar nahi ki main thano mein janmashtami ke parv ko rokun… koi adhikar nahi. (If I cannot stop anyone to reciting Namaaz on on roads then equally I have no rights to stop anyone to celebrate Janmashtmi in Police stations.). Yogi Adityanath is now trying to break his stereotype figure of ‘poster boy’ of BJP agenda in UP to a leader who talks development, and the BJP is looking to capitalise on him under project of ‘Project Yogi’.
Picking Ayodhya to celebrate Diwali underlines many hidden-unhidden agendas of the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) which embark the re-establishment of the Ram temple in the wake of ‘reincarnation’ of Ayodhya. Without even mentioning the name of controversial temple issue, Yogi has led the foundation of the temple and carved the way easier. This comes at a time when the BJP government is being criticised for the drop in GDP by 2% this quarter. The Modi government had to face backlash within the party when senior BJP leader and former Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha condemned the move of Demonetisation and criticised the government to be ignorant on the topic of economy downfall. There has been a league of economists which comprises stalwarts like Arun Shourie and Subramaniyan Swami who have been a critique time to time. At this time Ayodhya can be a saving grace for BJP.
Ahead of Gujarat Assembly elections, Yogi might be a star campaigner for BJP, like he did in Uttar Pradesh. Yogi said, “He can campaign wherever the party wants him to go. I will go to Gujarat also to campaign if the party says so.”
According to TOI, Yogi reportedly said, “UP should become hub of tourism and we are starting this initiative from Ayodhya. People should stop talking negatively about Ayodhya since this town has taught the world about Ram’s good works. Under the PM’s vision, there will be no homeless in the country by 2022, no family will be without a toilet by 2019, and there will be electrification of all homes. For a person who has never used a gas stove or has not had light at home, when these promises are delivered it will be Ram Rajya. Ayodhya will not be neglected anymore.”