Massive protests continues : UPA decides to withdraw affidavit

via HK published on September 13, 2007

NEW DELHI : After facing a massive protests all over the country by Hindu organizations, UPA government today decided to withdraw one paragraph of the affidavit filed in the Supreme Court questioning the existence of Lord Rama or other characters in the epic Ramayana.


After a quick intervention by Congress President Sonia Gandhi in a damage-control exercise, Law Minister H R Bhardwaj announced at a hurriedly-called press conference that the averments in the objectionable paragraphs will be withdrawn.


“We are filing a supplementary affidavit tomorrow in the Supreme Court,” he said, a day after the Archaeological Survey of India told the apex court that there was no historical and scientific evidence to establish the existence of Lord Rama or the other characters in Ramayana. The affidavit came under immediate attack from the Sangh Parivar organizations, including the BJP which called it “blasphemous”. Senior BJP leader L K Advani met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and also Bhardwaj at a dinner meeting last night and had told them “the highly objectionable affidavit be withdrawn.”


Highly placed sources said Gandhi directed the government to take “immediate remedial steps” to set right the situation.


Lord Rama is an integral part of Indian culture and ethos and cannot be a matter of debate, Bhardwaj said. Asked what clarification did the government planned to make, the minister said “this is in regard to our averment in the affidavit that there is no evidence that these characters of our scriptures did exist.” 


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