Seers divided on Ram Temple Trust graft allegations

Seers divided on corruption allegations against Ram Temple Trust

Some seers prayed and submitted a memorandum to Lord Hanuman seeking a probe into the allegations of corruption by a top central agency

The Trust has been on a land-buying spree ever since it was entrusted with the task of constructing the Ram Temple. Credit: Reuters File Photo

Seers in Ayodhya appear to be sharply divided on allegations of corruption in land purchases against the Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Khestra Trust, which is overseeing the construction of the Ram Temple.

While a section of the seers, mostly those owing allegiance to the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) has extended support to the Trust, another section of seers has demanded a thorough probe into the charges.

Scores of seers led by Mahant Dharm Das on Tuesday recited 'Hanuman Chalisa' (religious hymns praising Lord Hanuman) on the bank of the sacred Saryu river in Ayodhya and later also 'submitted' a memorandum to Lord Hanuman seeking a probe into the allegations of corruption by a top central agency.

''The people have donated money for Ram Temple construction...the centre should take cognisance of the allegations and order a probe,'' Dharm Das said in Ayodhya.

Another seer Mahant Dileep Das also lent support to the demand for an investigation into the allegations.

President of a saffron outfit Rashtriya Hindu Raksha Sena Swami Pramod, Anand Giri, however, sought to rubbish the charges and termed those levelling the allegations as ''anti-Hindu gang members''.

Aam Admi Party (AAP) leader and Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Singh and Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Tej Narayan Pandey had claimed that the price of the Trust had purchased a piece of land worth Rs two crore for Rs 18.5 crore.

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They accused Trust secretary Champat Rai of indulging in corrupt practices and demanded a CBI probe into the matter.

Rai, however, rejected the allegations and said that the land was purchased below the market value. ''It's a political conspiracy to malign the Trust....we have a record of everything,'' he had said.

The Trust has been on a land-buying spree ever since it was entrusted with the task of constructing the Ram Temple. The central government had allotted 70 acres of land for the Temple.

The Trust later decided to expand the area of the Temple and it had purchased several temples adjacent to the Ram Janambhoomi.

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