The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Seer sees no VHP role in Ayodhya

Hyderabad, Feb. 18: Kanchi sankaracharya Jayendra Saraswati, who is playing mediator on the Ayodhya issue, today said the Vishwa Hindu Parishad had no right to call for direct action on the issue and would be bound by the Supreme Court verdict.

“Any decision for future action on the mandir issue is the prerogative of the Ramjanmabhoomi Nyas and not the VHP,” he said, in an interaction with reporters during his two-day visit to the city.

Saraswati said since the Supreme Court hearing was scheduled for February 21, there was no reason to bring it forward. The dharma sansad — the forum of sadhus and religious heads —would meet on February 22 to decide the future course of action in Ayodhya and the court decision would, hopefully, be in time, he added.

The sankaracharya said he was confident the Supreme Court would take a decision that would pave the way for a smooth resolution of the issue that had driven a wedge between Muslims and Hindus.

Saraswati said he had not taken up the present assignment either on behalf of Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee or the VHP.

“I am not a representative of the Prime Minister or the Vishwa Hindu Parishad. I am only a representative of the Hindu dharma,” he said. “I have taken up this present assignment for the second time with a view to solving this complex issue which has been striking at the religious balance of the nation,” he said.

On whether he agreed with the stand taken by the Muslim Personal Law Board, the seer said that according to Islamic law, the institution’s agenda was only to resolve individual disputes of members of the Muslim community.

“It has no perspective or status to deliberate on general issues like the present one.”

Saraswati said he was neither visiting Delhi again nor participating in the dharma sansad called by the VHP. He also did not have any plans to meet or speak to the Prime Minister. But he stressed: “My job will not be complete till I bring Muslims and Hindus closer to resolve the contentious issue.”

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