Ayodhya seers upset over trust pacified by Shah ‘for now’

Ayodhya: A phone call from Union Home Minister Amit Shah appears to have pacified the saints of Ayodhya who were in an agitated mood over the constitution of the “Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust by the Modi government.

The saints, after an assurance by the union home minister, have postponed their meeting scheduled to be held at Digambar Akhara on Thursday evening.

“We have postponed the meeting for now,” said Mahant Kamal Nayan Das.

Mahant Nritya Gopal Das, who had earlier said that the exclusion of saints from the new trust announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday, was an ‘insult to the people of Ayodhya’, later told reporters that he was ready to ‘give some time’ to BJP leaders on the issue.

The local BJP MLA Ved Prakash Gupta who had earlier been turned away, also met the Mahant and pacified the saints.

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The saints are upset over the fact that the saint community has not been given adequate representation in the 15-member trust.

A large number of saints had collected at the Maniram Chavni ashram of Mahant Nritya Gopal Das, the chief trustee of the Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas, on Thursday morning to express their disapproval of the trust.

The saints had been demanding that Mahant Nritya Gopal Das be appointed as head of the new trust.

The Centre, however, has named K. Parasaran, the main lawyer of the Hindu side in the Supreme Court, as the head of the trust.

Mahant Nritya Gopal Das also expressed ‘surprise’ at the formation of the trust. “Those who have made sacrifices for the temple movement have been completely ignored. This is an insult to the saints of Ayodhya,” he told reporters.

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Mahant Kamal Nayan Das, designated successor to Nritya Gopal Das, said that the Vaishnav Samaj had been completely ignored in the trust. “We do not accept this trust,” he said.

Commenting on the inclusion of Bimlendra Mohan Pratap Mishra, the Ayodhya Raja, in the trust, the saint said that he was a political leader who had contested election on a BSP ticket. He said that Mishra had nothing to do with the Ayodhya movement.

Mahant Suresh Das of Digambar Akhara has also voiced his opposition to the new trust which “includes those who were nowhere in the temple movement.”

Mahant Paramhans Das of Tapasvi Chavni, who had put forward the name of RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat as head of the trust, has started an indefinite fast in protest at the Bilardeeh Shiva temple in Chandauli.

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