Pushing for the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya by consensus, members of the Muslim Rastriya Manch (MRM), an affiliate of the RSS, will march from Lucknow to Ayodhya next month. During the march between the two Uttar Pradesh towns, programmes will be held at every stop to convince people about the construction of a grand Ram temple, said convenor of the programme, Mahiradhwaj Singh.
“We want construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya by consensus. For this, MRM will take out a foot march from Lucknow to Ayodhya. It will start on September 11 and reach Ayodhya on September 16, covering over 140 km,” Singh told reporters in Lucknow. In Ayodhya, the programme will be attended by RSS leader Indresh Kumar and sadhus.According to MRM national convenor Mohammad Afzal, the organisation had been holding regular meetings with the Muslim community to try and convince them to resolve the temple issue through consensus. “MRM is expecting a favourable response from the community on the Ayodhya move. Our drive against cow slaughter was also successful,” Afzal claimed. On March 21, the Supreme Court described the Ram Mandir as a sensitive and sentimental issue and suggested that it would be best if it was settled amicably.The Ayodhya march was discussed in Haridwar meet of MRM in May in which it was planned to march to Ayodhya with Muslims in the vanguard. Asked about the details of the plan, Mahiradhwaj said, “It will be finalised in a day or two.” The MRM has also appealed to Muslims to sacrifice bad habits and not goats during Bakr Eid on September 2. “Animal sacrifice during Bakr Eid is a bad practice like triple talaq. People should boycott those advocating sacrifice on that day. Giving ‘kurbani’ during Bakr Eid is ‘haram’ (not approved) in Islam,” MRM convenor (Awadh Prant-UP) Syed Hasan Kausar said. Those wanting to give sacrifice should shun bad habits and cut a symbolic ‘goat cake’, he said.
Earlier this month, the Manch had announced that it would launch a countrywide campaign, with special focus on Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Bihar, to persuade Muslims not to sacrifice cows on Bakr Eid. MRM leaders recently met Islamic scholars associated with the organisation in New Delhi at an event presided over by senior RSS leader Indresh Kumar where a resolution was passed against cow slaughter.