You must know: Why the Congress party has decided not to attend the Ram Temple inauguration?

Even as the impending Ram temple inauguration in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh has become a highly anticipated ceremony as it has drawn huge attention from across the nation, the Congress party has on Wednesday - January 10 announced that it has declined the invitation to attend the ceremony. The decision has come at a high time when the Modi regime is prepping to gain a political momentum through the inauguration ahead of the Lok Sabha polls. 

The BJP, with an unequivocal support from its Hindutva base, is hoping to reap political benefits through inaugurating the Ram temple as it is one of its top agendas ahead of the general elections. The political observers say that the saffron party will be pacing up its campaign for the elections after inaugurating the temple in Uttar Pradesh and the BJP is of the view that Ram temple would crucially strengthen the party's campaign in Hindi heartlands, which have a major share in the Lok Sabha. 

It is expected that over 7,000 guests will be attending the inauguration ceremony that will be held on January 22. Though the construction wasn't completely over, the BJP is determined to go with the schedule. From celebrities, seers, to foreign dignitaries, the ceremony would witness an attendance of people from different backgrounds. When the arrangments for the ceremony are on full-swing, the Congress party has now turned heads by declining the invitation. 

The Congress has announced that it won't take part in what it has called as an 'RSS/BJP event'. The party has said its senior leaders - party's president Mallikarjun Kharge, former president Sonia Gandhi, and the party's Lok Sabha leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury - who had received an invitation have declined it. 

Issuing a statement on Wednesday with this regard, veteran Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said, "Last month, the Congress President and the Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Shri Mallikarjun Kharge, Congress Parliamentary Party Chairperson, Smt Sonia Gandhi and the Leader of the Congress Party in the Lok Sabha Shri Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury received an invitation to attend the inauguration ceremony of the Ram Mandir at Ayodhya to be held on January 22nd, 2024." 

Jairam Ramesh's statement further read, "Lord Ram is worshipped by millions in our country. Religion is a personal matter. But the RSS/BJP have long made a political project of the temple in Ayodhya. The inauguration of the incomplete temple by the leaders of the BJP and the RSS has been obviously brought forward for electoral gain. While abiding by the 2019 Supreme Court judgment and honouring the sentiments of millions who revere Lord Ram, Shri Mallikarjun Kharge, Smt Sonia Gandhi, and Shri Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury have respectfully declined the invitation to what is clearly an RSS/BJP event."