Chandigarh: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh Sunday appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to personally intervene to resolve the tension triggered by the demolition of Ravidas temple in Delhi on the orders of the Supreme Court.
The Chief Minister’s initiative followed state-wide protests by members of the agitated Ravidas community, under the banner of the Guru Ravidas Jayanti Samaroh Samiti, which has called for nation-wide bandh on August 13.
The community has also announced to observe August 15 as a Black Day.
Taking serious note of the protests, Amarinder Singh said while he did not wish to comment on the Supreme Court order, which had led to the razing of the religious structure, he was personally not in favour of demolition of monuments and structures of such historical importance, connected so deeply with the sentiments of a community.
The Chief Minister also appealed to the community to call off their protests as his government was ready to extend full support to them to get the matter amicably resolved with the Central government.
Amarinder Singh also personally spoke to Union Urban Development Minister Hardeep Singh Puri to seek re-allotment of the same site, which reportedly belongs to the Delhi Development Authority, to enable the community to reconstruct the temple, along with the ‘sarovar’, which has also been demolished.
Extending all legal and financial assistance to the community to take the matter forward, the Chief Minister has constituted a five-member committee to meet the religious and political representatives of the community and formulate a comprehensive strategy to resolve the issue.
An official spokesperson of the Punjab CM said that Amarinder Singh had taken cognisance of the issue amid protests by dalits at Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Phagwara, Gurdaspur and Amritsar, where several state highways were blocked, causing hardship to the commuters.