A civil society group of activists, eminent citizens and leaders of prominent religious organisations have written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, demanding to take immediate action to stop the coercion in the Fund collection drive for the construction of Ayodhya Ram Temple across the country, which is disturbing the law and order.
The eminent citizens in their letter, wrote, “We wish to draw your urgent attention towards the recent activities with regard to Fund Collection for the Construction of Ram Temple. In many sensitive areas the element of coercion by the fund collectors has all the ingredients of creating a breakdown of law and order and social harmony. The drive for Fund Collection for the construction of Ayodhya Ram Mandir started on 25 Dec. 2020 from the state of Madhya Pradesh which resulted in communal violence on a large scale. It has taken place in four districts of Madhya Pradesh, namely Mandsaur, Chandankhedi (Indore), Ujjain and Rajgarh. In Jeerapura Mohalla there was massive destruction of public and private properties, loss of innocent lives and grave injuries to many inhabitants.”
The letter continued, “it was callous on the part of the state government in spite of the violence the collection drive was carried out in the rest of the Malwa region in Madhya Pradesh from 15 January 2021 onwards. In fact, these events are leading to a communally polarized and tense environment in most places. In the last week, another incident took place. A video went viral on social media in which the two men could be seen making highly objectionable remarks against the Muslim community during a motorcycle rally to collect funds for the Ram Temple. The said rally, which took place in the Shikarpur area of Bulandshahar district, Uttar Pradesh, was organized by the VHP. The two men shouted abusive slogans in the middle of the road, recorded their act on camera and shared it on social media. Three days ago, three persons were injured in a clash between two community members in Gujarat’s Kutch district during a rally for the Collection of Funds for the Ram Temple. Minister for Food & Civil Supplies, K. Gopalaiah together with MLA Preetham Gowda and other BJP workers, went door to door to raise donations at Beerahnahalli, Shivamogga, Karnataka forgetting their constitutional obligations.”
The letter has pointed out that the slogans being shouted and the routes chosen intentionally from specific areas strengthens the apprehension and indicates towards the actual objectives of such activities. “It seems that more than the fund collection, the objective is to polarize the society on communal grounds. These elements are teasing, provoking and trying to create an atmosphere of fear amongst specifically the Muslim community and all others who are not in line with these elements,” the letter added.
The group of leaders and activists suggested that the rallies and fund Collection drives studiously avoid localities and the immediate vicinity of religious places of other communities. “It is the duty of the forces of law and order to ensure that there is no coercion and communal provocations in these fund collection drives,” the letter further added.
The concerned citizens who penned a letter to the PM are Mr. Naved Hamid President of All India Muslim Majlis Mushawarat, Maulana Wali Rahmani head of Imarat-e-Shariah Bihar, Maulana Tauqeer Raza Khan President of Ittehad-e-Millat Council, Mr. Syed Sadatullah Husaini President of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, Moulana Asghar Imam Mehdi head of Jamiat-e-Ahle Hadees, Dr. Manzoor Alam, chairman of IOS, Dr. Zafar Ul Islam Khan former Chairman of Minority Commission, Delhi, Mr. Ravi Nair, Executive Director of South Asia Human Rights Documentation Centre, Prof. Ram Puniyani, Prof. Apoorvanand of Delhi University, Maulana Khalid Saifullah Rahmani Secretary of AIMPLB, Maulana Mohsin Taqwi Khateeb of Shia, Jama Masjid, Delhi, Mufti Abdur Raziq President of Jamiatul Ulama, Mrs Kavita Shrivastava of PUCL, Engineer Mohammad Saleem General Secretary of FDCA, Mr. Dankesh Oza, RTI activist, Gujarat, Mr. Sawai Singh, activist Rajasthan and Mr. Ambarish Rai, educationist.