Art of Living
founder Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, who has offered to mediate in the Ayodhya dispute, on Thursday met various people and claimed to have received "very good and positive signs" from both the communities even though the stakeholders in the case were less hopeful.
"I am not here to give a solution to this issue... I want people to come together and find a solution... and I found very positive response from both the communities...," Ravi Shankar told reporters later.
"I would like to appeal to you to please have some patience... give some time... 2 or 3 months please give some time... let people of both communities think...," he said.
He said it is a Herculean task and he will meet all type of people. "We will need everyone's cooperation for this."
Several stakeholders gave a tepid and sceptical response to his offer. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath
also did not sound very positive on the outcome of Ravi Shankar's efforts.
Adityanath, who met Ravi Shankar on Wednesday, said everyone knows where talks would lead, especially when the Supreme Court is going to hear the matter from December 5 on a day-to-day basis.
"The Supreme Court is going to hear the matter on a day-to-day basis from December 5. Everyone knows where the talks would lead... Had the solution (to the dispute) been possible, it would have been reached earlier," he told reporters in Lucknow.
"Even after this, if someone initiates talks there is no harm. The government is not a party to this. In my first visit to Ayodhya, I had said that if both the parties reach consensus on the issue, the government could consider. The government cannot take an initiative in this regard as the matter is before the Supreme Court," he added.
Mahant Gyan Das, the chief priest of Hanumangarhi temple, refused to meet Ravi Shankar in Ayodhya on Thursday alleging he is "fooling the public in the name of negotiations".
Another priest of the temple, Mahant Raju Das, claimed that Ravi Shankar is seeking to take credit as the Ayodhya issue is very near to a peaceful solution.
Triloki Nath Pandey, a senior VHP
leader and a litigant in the Supreme Court in the Ayodhya issue, alleged that Ravi Shankar met those who are not even parties in the case.
Iqbal Ansari (son of late Hashim Ansari, another litigant) dismissed Ravi Shankar's visit as a "political stunt".
However, Ravi Shankar reacted saying, "Some people are opposing my move as they have no hope that this dispute may be solved through negotiated settlement. But there are a lot of people who believe that peaceful solution of the Ayodhya issue may come out only through talks."
"If the court gives any verdict and if any one community feels left out... and even if the mandir or whatever is built there... after 50 or 100 years the problem might come back again... so the best thing is these two communities come together and then this problem will be resolved," he said.
He interacted with the media after meeting Mahant Dinendra Das of Nirmohi Akhara.
He also met a gathering of Muslim intellectuals in Faizabad city.