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'Atheist' Siddaramaiah may allocate Rs 100 crore to revamp Karnataka's Ram temples; BJP slams CM's hypocrisy

Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, an atheist, inaugurated a Ram temple in Bengaluru, allocating Rs 100 crore for ancient Ram temple refurbishment in response to BJP's Ayodhya event. Political analysts see this as a Congress strategy for electoral gain, with potential plans for Ayodhya projects in the upcoming budget. BJP criticizes Congress as "anti-Hindu."

'Atheist' Siddaramaiah may allocate Rs 100 crore to revamp Karnataka's Ram temples; BJP slams CM's hypocrisy vkp
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First Published Feb 4, 2024, 9:33 AM IST

To beat the tactics of BJP’s recent inauguration of Ram Mandir at Ayodhya, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah of Karnataka has set aside Rs 100 crore for the refurbishment of ancient Ram temples in the state, which has caused a stir in the state ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

Siddaramaiah, who is well-known for his atheist beliefs, inaugurated a Ram temple in Bengaluru's Mahadevapura area, seen as a strategic move in response to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's participation in the consecration of the Ramlalla idol in Ayodhya.

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While the temple inauguration is largely symbolic, political experts have criticised the Congress government has bigger plans and hinted that the Congress may use the Ram temple issue for political advantage against the BJP in the upcoming Lok Sabha election

An official, who didn’t disclose his identity hinted at a potential announcement by the Karnataka CM in the budget for the fiscal year 2024-25, outlining plans for the restoration of the ancient Ram Temple and the construction of substantial residential complexes in Ayodhya. Discussions are reportedly ongoing to incorporate these projects into the plans of Hindu religious institutions and the endowment department for the financial year.

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In a tweet, the Congress party stated, “The government has allocated Rs 100 crores for the renovation of ancient Ram temples. Lord Ram is also present in Karnataka… Our government has taken steps to restore ancient temples in this regard. God and religion are not objects of politics for us; they are only a spiritual path to belief and devotion.”

Meanwhile, R Ashoka, the leader of the opposition in the Karnataka assembly, accused the Congress of being “anti-Hindu” and criticized Siddaramaiah for attempting to demoralize BJP workers. He also stated the stance of the Congress government as they had ordered arrests of two activists who participated in the Ayodhya Ram Janmabhoomi movement in 1992 and said, “No matter what they do, the votes and those who believe in Hindutva will respond to the Congress in the upcoming election.

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