Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address an election rally in Ayodhya (previously Faizabad) district on May 1. He held a roadshow in his parliamentary constituency Varanasi on Thursday and filed nomination from the same city today.
This would be the Modi’s maiden visit to Ayodhya after he became the Prime Minister of the nation. Earlier, he had visited Ayodhya on May 5, 2014 to address a public meeting in the run up to the 2014 Lok Sabha elections as the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate.
Modi would address a rally at Maya Bazaar, about 25 km from Ayodhya town, which houses the makeshift Ramlala temple. The rally spot is a part of the Ambedkar Nagar parliamentary constituency and is a part of the Ayodhya district. Ambedkar Nagar and Faizabad parliamentary seats are among the 14 Lok Sabha constituencies in Central Uttar Pradesh or Awadh region, which would witness polling in the 5th phase of Lok Sabha elections on May 6.
“This is expected to be a historic rally. People from all walks of life, including farmers, traders, teachers and even students are showing enthusiasm to listen to the prime minister,” Mayor of Ayodhya, Rishikesh Upadhyay told Business Standard.
While the BJP has time and again reaffirmed its commitment towards the construction of a grand Lord Ram temple, the party also takes recourse to the sub-judice title suit before the Supreme Court.
When Modi visited Ayodhya in May 2014 for his rally, a model of the proposed Ram temple was also kept on the stage, juxtaposed with a large Lord Ram image in the background. In fact, back then Modi started and ended his speech while invoking Ram, although he did not comment on the issue of the construction of the Ram temple.
In November 2018, Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and BJP ally Shiv Sena organised separate conventions in Ayodhya to pressurise BJP to facilitate the construction of the temple.
On November 24, Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, accompanied by his wife and son, had arrived on his maiden visit to Ayodhya. He had called upon prominent saints/seers and paid obeisance at the Ramlala temple, while pledging support to the government on the temple issue.
Earlier, the Yogi Adityanath government had renamed Faizabad district as Ayodhya, while also upgrading the local municipal council as Ayodhya Municipal Corporation to reiterate its commitment towards developing the temple town as a major tourist attraction. The Ayodhya airstrip is also being developed as an airport.