New Delhi: The Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) on Saturday demanded that the government rebuild the ancient temples at the Qutub Minar complex and allow resumption of Hindu rituals and prayers there.
The demands came after a group of VHP leaders, including its national spokesperson Vinod Bansal, visited the compound of the monument which was designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1993.
VHP spokesperson Vinod Bansal has claimed that QutabMinar is actually ‘Vishnu Stambh’.
“Qutub Minar was built with materials obtained after demolishing 27 Hindu and Jain temples. The superimposed structure was built just to tease the Hindu community,” he stated.
“We visited major parts of the site and it was heart-rending to see the condition of the idols of Hindu deities… Qutub Minar was built with materials obtained after demolishing 27 Hindu temples. The superimposed structure was built just to tease the country,” Bansal told PTI when asked about his visit to the site.
“We demand that all the 27 temples, which were demolished at the site in the past, be rebuilt and Hindus be allowed to offer prayers there,” he said.
National Monument Authority (NMA) chairman and BJP leader Tarun Vijay had on Thursday said that Ganesha idols were placed “disrespectfully” in the Qutub Minar complex.
“The idols are currently placed at the most disrespectful place, upside down at the feet level of visitors. The idols should either be removed or placed respectfully inside the Qutub complex,” he had told PTI.
Vijay also said that he had raised the issue with the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) over a year ago but was yet to receive a response to his letter.
VHP spokesperson Bansal said, “Tarun Vijay ji has raised the issue with the ASI… We hope that the government and its concerned departments do a serious pondering over the issue and restore the honour of the Hindu society.”
When asked about the VHP’s future course of action on the issue, he said the matter will be discussed by senior leaders and “if the need arises, we may also consider taking legal course of action.”
According to the Delhi Tourism website, the 73-metre high Qutab Minar was built with materials obtained after demolishing 27 Hindu temples at the site after the defeat of Delhi’s last Hindu kingdom.
The wesbite states: “An inscription over its (Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque) eastern gate provocatively informs that it was built with material obtained from demolishing ’27 Hindu temples’.”
Qutab-ud-din Aibak, the first Muslim ruler of Delhi, commenced the construction of the Qutab Minar in 1200 AD but could only finish the basement. His successor, Iltutmush, added three more storeys, and in 1368, Firoz Shah Tughlak constructed the fifth and the last storey, according to the website.