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A toast to communal harmony: Bihar Muslims donate land for world’s largest Hindu temple

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Setting a benchmark for communal harmony in India, Muslims in Patna, Bihar, have decided to donate the land for the construction of world’s largest Hindu temple, which will also hold a seating capacity of more than 20,000 devotees.

Acharya Kishore Kunal, Secretary of the Patna-based cash-rich Mahavir Mandir Trust and also a former Indian Police Service officer, said, “Muslims have not only donated land, they have also provided land at a nominal rate for construction of the world’s largest Hindu temple. Without help of Muslims, it would have been difficult realize this dream project.”

“It is usual for Hindus to donate land for temple, but it is unusual for Muslims to donate land for the construction of temple,” he added.

The projected cost for the construction is Rs.500 crore and the work will start from June at Janki Nagar near Kesaria in East Champaran district, about 150 km from Patna.

Around 35 Muslim families were having their land in the middle of the proposed area for the construction. There were a few families who had land along the main road that connects to the project site, but still they offered their land for the successful completion of the pious cause.

“Some Muslims donated lands and others helped and supported us to purchase their land for the temple. If Muslims had not come forward, the temple project was sure to have got delayed,” Acharya Kunal informed.

Mahavir Mandir Trust has obtained 200 acres of land out of which both the Hindu community and the Muslim community donated about 50 acres, and the rest of the land has been purchased.

Prior to this remarkable example of communal brotherhood, Muslims had also helped in the construction of a Hindu temple dedicated to Goddess Durga in Gaya district, another temple was dedicated to God Shiva in Begusarai district and in Sitamarhi district.

The construction of the temple will be overtaken by Valecha Construction Company. The temple will be 2,500 feet long, 1,296 feet wide and 379 feet high.

Gurgaon based Radheyshyam Sharma, Director of Ingenious Studio Pvt. Ltd., who is looking after the temple’s architectural aspects, said the Virat Ramayan Mandir will be taller than the world famous 12th century Angkor Wat Temple complex in Cambodia, which is 215 feet high. According to him, “No temple in the world has such a huge seating capacity as this one will have.”

He said, “The complex will comprise 18 temples with high spires and its Shiv temple would have the largest Shiva linga in the world. The temple will also have the idols of Ram, Sita, Luv and Kush.”

Sharma added that the temple was to be named “Virat Angkor Wat Ram Mandir,” however, following the objections raised by people of Cambodia, name of the temple was changed.

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Hindus In Delhi Push For A Temple On The Ruins Of a Mosque

The Supreme Court has delayed hearings into the disputed site but hardliners have vowed to lay a foundation stone next year regardless.

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Supporters of Vishwa Hindu Parishad gather during a rally in New Delhi, Dec. 9, 2018. The group gathered thousands of supporters to demand the construction of a Hindu temple on a site where a mosque was attacked, demolished in 1992. VOA

Tens of thousands of hardline Hindu protesters marched in New Delhi on Sunday, calling for a grand temple to be built on the ruins of a destroyed mosque in a flashpoint Indian city.

Trident-waving devotees clad in saffron filled a huge parade ground in the Indian capital under tight security, where speakers warned Prime Minister Narendra Modi they would not let up until the temple was sanctioned.

Some of Modi’s supporters feel the Hindu nationalist leader has not done enough to raise a shrine at a site in Ayodhya, a city believed by many to be the birthplace of the deity Ram.

The site was home to a medieval mosque for 460 years until Hindu zealots tore it down in 1992, kicking off riots across India that left thousands dead, most of them Muslims.

Its future has been tied up in courts for decades but some hardliners want Modi, who is seeking reelection in 2019, to push parliament to guarantee the temple by law.

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Hindus don’t oppose anyone, don’t aspire to dominate: RSS chief

“The gathering here is telling you that Hindus won’t sit back until the temple is built, and our wishes are respected,” said Champat Rai, the leader of the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) group that organized the protest.

Demonstrators chanting “Praise be to Ram” packed the Ramlila Maidan, a vast ground capable of holding more than 50,000 people, and filled the surrounding streets.

Some carried maces and tridents — weapons traditionally wielded by Hindu gods — and traveled great distances by train and bus to reach the rally.

“We have come here to protect our religion and Hindu pride. We want a temple for our Lord Ram,” Hitesh Bharadwaj, a teacher from Delhi’s satellite city Noida, told AFP.

The hardline VHP has applied pressure on Modi in recent weeks, staging a huge show of force in Ayodhya itself last month.

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A close ally of Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the group is spearheading a push to raise the Ram temple, and is calling for more protests as the premier prepares to go to the polls by May.

The BJP was on the margins until the 1980s when its top leaders, including Modi, backed a growing movement for the construction of the Ram temple.

Its advocates want parliament to introduce a law bypassing legal hurdles blocking the temple before Modi’s term ends.

Also Read: Delhi’s Air Quality Leads To Ban On Trucks And Construction

The Supreme Court has delayed hearings into the disputed site but hardliners have vowed to lay a foundation stone next year regardless.

“We don’t care about the courts. A grand temple will be constructed in 2019,” Sushil Chawdhary, a VHP leader, told AFP. (VOA)