The senior Congress leaders who had been invited to attend the consecration of Ram Lallla at the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya on January 22, have all declined to attend the event.
Congress general secretary for communications Jairam Ramesh confirmed the development through a statement on Wednesday. The statement mentioned that the senior Congress leaders including Mallikarjun Kharge, Sonia Gandhi and Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury have "respectfully declined the invitation to what is clearly an RSS/BJP event".
The statement read, "Last month, the Congress President and Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Shri Mallikarjun Kharge, Congress Parliamentary Party Chairperson, Smt. Sonia Gandhi and the Leader of the Congress Party in the Lok Sabha Shri Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury received an invitation to attend the inauguration ceremony of the Ram Mandir at Ayodhya to be held on January 22nd, 2024."
"Lord Ram is worshipped by millions in our country. Religion is a personal matter. But the RSS/BJP have long made a political project of the temple in Ayodhya. The inauguration of the incomplete temple by the leaders of the BJP and the RSS has been obviously brought forward for electoral gain. While abiding by the 2019 Supreme Court judgment and honouring the sentiments of millions who revere Lord Ram, Shri Mallikarjun Kharge, Smt. Sonia Gandhi and Shri Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury have respectfully declined the invitation to what is clearly an RSS/BJP event," it added.