Gujarat elections: Why Congress is linking Ram Mandir to polls, asks Modi

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"I learnt that the prime minister and Amit Shah have said that I represented the Sunni Waqf Board in the Supreme Court, but I was never representing the Sunni Waqf Board in the Ayodhya issue".

In a fresh twist to the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute, the Sunni Waqf Board on Wednesday disassociated itself from senior advocate Kapil Sibal's arguments in the Supreme Court, seeking postponement of hearing in the matter till the 2019 elections. "You want to keep the issue unresolved for political gain and losses in the elections?"

"As the representative body (of Muslims), the board endorses and confirms the said statement of the counsels made in court", it said in a statement. Indeed, even in this instance, Sibal, Rajeev Dhavan, and Dushyant Dave were appearing for the litigants, and the Waqf Board could be backing off now because it doesn't want to be embroiled in a controversy, said a lawyer appearing for one of the litigants on condition of anonymity.

He also accused the Congress of linking the Ram temple issue with the elections.

He also said that the true character of the party was revealed the way one of its leaders pitched to extend the dates of the Ayodhya matter hearing.

"Everybody was saying that if we take a stand against it, we will face a backlash in the UP elections, but we took a stand and the Supreme Court asked us to form a law in six months", he said. "You want to stop the hearing of Ram temple (issue) in the name of elections", Modi told a well-attended election rally in Ahmedabad district. "Yesterday, in the Supreme Court, Congress MP Kapil Sibal was arguing (which is his right) for the Babri Masjid".

The prime minister said now he understands why the Congress kept many issues unresolved, without elaborating but implying that it was done to derive political mileage.

Sibal had, yesterday, demanded for the next hearing in the case to be held only in July 2019 after the completion of the next Lok Sabha polls, citing political ramifications. Modi asked from the crowd. "We want to know whether or not the Congress party wants a speedy verdict on the Ram Temple". "The PM did not check the fact that actually I never represented the Sunni Waqf Board in the Supreme Court". "It is certain that Sibal spoke in his capacity as a Congress leader, with the blessings of their high command".

The Congress Party then furthered the war of words and said the BJP was raking up non-issues just to garner votes.

"I want to question the Congress Party and explain if it wants the Ram Janmbhoomi matter to be heard at the earliest or not", he asked.

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