Nepal PM Reignites Ayodhya Row, Reiterates Lord Ram Was Born In Nepal
Kathmandu: For the second time in a month, Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli said that he was convinced Lord Ram was born in south Nepal’s Ayodhyapuri, and not Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh.
Oli is in the midst of an acrimonious power struggle within the ruling Nepal Communist Party, which seems to be headed for a split. The Prime Minister has stated that he isn’t going to step down, as demanded by the rival camp led by the party’s co-chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and the two other former PMs, Madhav Nepal and Jhalanath Khanal.
It is widely believed that Oli has been provoking India to endear himself to China’s communist party. He got the Nepal map changed by including Kalapani, Limpiyadhura and Lipulekh of Uttarakhand as part of its sovereign territory.
In July, he first claimed that Lord Ram was born in Ayodhyapuri – a remark described as “ludicrous” by his party leaders who were uneasy with the prime minister’s “undiplomatic” and “irritating” pinpricks targeting India.
New Delhi had let it pass after the Nepal foreign ministry clarified that the PM only meant to highlight importance of further studies and research of the cultural geography represented by Ramayana.
Oli raked up the issue again on Saturday, when he met a delegation from Madi in Chitwan district to discuss his plans for Lord Ram’s birthplace. He told the delegation that they should prepare to set up Lord Ram’s idol and promote Ayodhyapuri as his place of birth.