The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Naidu peace plea at Sangh door

New Delhi, June 22: As the Centre kept up its effort to find a negotiated solution to the Ayodhya dispute through the Kanchi Sankaracharya and by keeping the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) out, the RSS continued to back its militant progeny.

RSS sarsanghchalak K.S. Sudarshan iterated to BJP president M. Venkaiah Naidu today that the NDA government must move a legislation to hand over the Ayodhya land to the VHP-backed Ramjanmabhoomi Trust at the earliest.

Sources close to Sudarshan said he made it clear that the Hindu organisation’s claim on Kashi and Mathura were non-negotiable and no compromise was possible even if Muslims were prepared to give the “disputed” land to the trust.

The RSS chief also told Naidu that the VHP must be included in the loop of a settlement.

RSS sources discounted the possibility of the reconstruction of a mosque next to the Ram temple. The comments came following a report that this was one of the proposals offered by the Kanchi seer in his letter to the chairman of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board.

Naidu had an hour-long meeting with Sudarshan here today to brief him on the BJP’s chintan baithak which reportedly took a grim view of the VHP’s stridency after the Kanchi seer got into the act.

Naidu is learnt to have told the RSS leader that while the BJP was all for a law, it was impractical to bring one in because the coalition lacked the majority for its passage.

BJP sources said Naidu brought to Sudarshan’s notice that most of his party MPs had signed a letter circulated by the VHP to all Parliament members to garner support for a law. However, the number was not enough.

The BJP chief requested Sudarshan to use his “good offices” to rein in the VHP from attacking the government, especially the Prime Minister and the deputy Prime Minister.

The RSS’ backing for the VHP, said sources, was the prime reason why the government had not involved itself openly in the Ayodhya exercise. The last time the government did so in February 2002, it lost face after the fiasco over the shila daan which petered out into a symbolic function after the Supreme Court ruled that nothing could be done on the land.

This time, the government was expected to step in only when a resolution was clearly in sight. The BJP sources claimed that it helped the party keep the issue alive till the year-end Assembly polls.

In Lucknow, Mahant Ramchandradas Paramhans, the trust chief who was discharged today from hospital where he was admitted after a heart attack, told PTI that he would not accept a formula proposed by any religious or political leader except one which ensures construction of a temple at the place where Ram was born.

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