"Lord Ram Is With Everyone": Priyanka Gandhi Ahead Of Ayodhya Ceremony

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra tweeted to express hope that the Bhoomipujan ceremony of the temple of Ramlala became an occasion for "national unity, fraternity and cultural congregation".

The Congress has not been invited for the ceremony tomorrow at Ayodhya.

New Delhi:

Congress's Priyanka Gandhi Vadra marked the oncoming groundbreaking ceremony at Ayodhya with a tweet saluting Lord Ram, marking the shift in the party's stance towards the Ayodhya issue. Ram is with everyone, she tweeted, expressing hope that Wednesday's ceremony at Ram Janambhoomi will become an occasion for "national unity, fraternity and cultural congregation".

"Simplicity, courage, restraint, sacrifice, commitment, are the essence of the name Deenbandhu Rama. Ram is with everyone, Ram is with everyone," read a Hindi tweet of Ms Gandhi Vadra, who is an in-charge of the party in Uttar Pradesh, the state where Ayodhya is located.

"With the message and grace of Lord Rama and Mother Sita, the Bhoomipujan ceremony of the temple of Ramlala became an occasion for national unity, fraternity and cultural congregation," read another tweet, in a reminder of the clash and bloodshed over the issue for decades.

The Congress has not been invited for the ceremony at Ayodhya, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi and more than a hundred VIPs are expected to take part.

Following the Supreme Court's verdict in November that said a temple should be built in Ayodhya, the Congress Working Committee had passed a resolution welcoming the judgment. At the time, Congress's chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala had also said the party was in favour of the temple construction.

But the party went into the silent mode since, aware that any false step will further impair its chances in the Hindi heartland, especially Uttar Pradesh, where it has practically been wiped out.

Ahead of last year's elections, Ms Gandhi Vadra was given charge of reviving the party in eastern Uttar Pradesh. Her brother Rahul Gandhi, who was the party chief at the time, made it clear that it should be done by the next assembly election in the state. 

The party has since been trying to nuance its stand on the issue -- a task made difficult by Rahul Gandhi's multiple temple visits which was branded as "soft Hindutva" by BJP leaders.

Madhya Pradesh leaders Kamal Nath and Digvijaya SIngh have already welcomed the temple. While Mr Nath, in a video message, said the temple construction is being "carried out with the consent of every Indian", Digvijaya Singh warned the BJP that the date for groundbreaking ceremony is "inauspicious".

In a series of tweets on Monday, Mr Singh said: "I again request Modiji postpone the ground-breaking ceremony of the Ram temple on August 5. After a struggle of hundreds of years, the occasion for the construction of the temple has come. Dont allow your arrogance create obstruction in the way."

Another Congress leader, Manish Tiwari, posted a series of tweets on the "bhoomi poojan", including a video message, where he sang Mahatma Gandhi's favourite Ram bhajans.

Mr Nath, who lost power in the state in March after senior Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia crossed over to the BJP, conducted his own prayer meeting, where he pointed out that it was former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi who paved the way for the temple construction.

In 1986, then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi had allowed the opening of the locks of Babri Masjid and three years later, ahead of the general elections, permitted shilanyas.

On December 6, 1992, a 16th Century mosque said to be have been built by Mughal emperor Babar, was razed by thousands of right-wing volunteers, who claimed it was built after demolishing a temple marking the birthplace of Lord Ram. The event unleashed a cycle of violence that claimed hundreds of lives and dominated political headlines for decades.