Will Ram Mandir Eradicate Poverty? Karnataka Minister Santosh Lad Triggers Outrage

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'Will Ram Mandir Eradicate Poverty?' Karnataka Minister Triggers Outrage

Santosh Lad said the temple’s location deviated from the Supreme Court’s suggested site

Bengaluru:

Karnataka Labour Minister Santosh Lad stirred a fresh controversy as he asked whether the Ram Mandir construction in Ayodhya would eradicate poverty.

Mr Lad said the construction of the temple was driven by political motives. “The construction of Ram Mandir will not eradicate poverty. It was constructed for their (BJP) political gains,” he said.

He said the chosen location of the temple deviated from the Supreme Court’s suggested site.

“We are not opposing Ram Mandir construction. The place where it has been constructed is not correct. It was not constructed where the Supreme Court suggested. They have constructed only 40% of it,” he said.

He challenged the government’s narrative, asking whether the construction of the Ram Mandir had led to the eradication of poverty or brought any benefits to the farmers. The minister pointed to the ongoing farmer protests and questioned the government’s commitment to addressing their concerns.

“What did you benefit from it? What did our sisters benefit from it? Why is the BJP asking for votes on the basis of a mandir? Have the farmers benefited? If they would have benefited, why are they protesting? Why are bulldozers and tear gas being used against the farmers?” he asked.

Reacting to the statements made by the Congress leader over the site of the construction of Ram Mandir, former Karnataka Chief Minister Basvaraj Bommai said, “The place where the Ram Mandir is built, is the site where Ram Lalla (sanctum sanctorum) was there 500 years ago. Santosh Lad was not born 500 years ago to ascertain all this. There are a lot of things in the state for him to do. He should concentrate on that,” he said.

Condemning Mr Lad’s remark, former Deputy Chief Minister of Karnataka, CN Ashwathnarayan said, “Santosh Lad must know the history of Ram Mandir. People waited for the temple to be built and the people are happy. Instead of speaking politics, Santosh Lad must speak reality. I strongly condemn his statement.”

Meanwhile, Karnataka Congress MLA Rizwan Arshad backed Mr Lad and said, “What is wrong in speaking the truth? The BJP is using the narrative of Ram Mandir and other emotional things for many reasons. It is a hard truth that they utilize only emotional issues because they don’t have developmental things for any election.”

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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