The Hanuman shrine darshan in Ayodhya was the latest in a series of temple visits by Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who is in charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh for the Congress
While she was inside the temple, Congress and BJP supporters shouted slogans against each other outside, news agency PTI reported. Priyanka Gandhi’s visit to the temple marked the end of a 50-km road show from Kumar Ganj, during which she met supporters at several places.
Her Ayodhya visit was the last leg of her three-day tour of Uttar Pradesh that included Amethi and Rae Bareli, the Lok Sabha constituencies of Congress president Rahul Gandhi and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, respectively. When Gandhi’s vehicle entered the temple campus from the second entry gate (back door), a group of people raised ‘Modi Modi’ slogans. However, cops chased them.
Before entering the temple, she covered her head with her saree and also wore a traditional ‘chunri’. “Priyanka Gandhi performed pooja and sought blessings from Lord Hanuman. She did not disclose, but she might have sought blessings for her brother (Rahul Gandhi) and the Congress,” said Mahant Prem Das, the priest who presided over the pooja.
Priyanka, however, did not visit Ram Lalla at the makeshift temple at the Ram Janmabhoomi site. When she was asked about her decision not to visit the Ram Janmabhoomi site, the Congress general secretary said: “The matter is sub judice.” She was referring to the ongoing case in the SC and the court-appointed mediation process to resolve the age old Ram Janmabhoomi–Babri Masjid dispute. After offering prayers at the temple, Priyanka left for Lucknow en route to Delhi.
Fight Between BJP & Congress Supporters
As she offered prayers, residents and sadhus gathered outside, so did a group of BJP supporters who tried to show a black flag, PTI reported. Congress then shouted “chowkidar chor hai”, following which there was a scuffle between the two groups.
“We used light force to disperse the mob,” Faizabad city senior police officer Anil Singh Sisodia said.
Hanuman Garhi temple mahant Gyan Das said he wished the Congress leader well. “Priyanka Gandhi will get the blessings from Hanuman Garhi,” he said.
Iqbal Ansari, a litigant in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute, said the visit was a matter of her personal belief. “But this is a political stunt. No work has been done by the Congress for the development of Ayodhya,” he added.
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