PM could have got Ram Mandir consecration done by Dalit community: Gehlot

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Former Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot (File image)

Jaipur: Former Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot on Friday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had an opportunity to send a message against untouchability by getting the consecration at Ayodhya's Ram Mandir done by Dalits and tribals instead of putting himself at the forefront.


The Ram Temple inauguration, led by Prime Minister Modi, will be held on January 22.

"This was an opportunity to give a message against untouchability by getting the 'pran pratishtha' done by the Dalits, tribals, OBCs and people of all religions and keeping Shankaracharya in the front," Gehlot told reporters here.

"The President would go there. Former president Ram Nath Kovind is also from the Dalit community, he would have been called. LK Adavani should have been called," he added.


The Congress leader said that just like the prime minister "called for beating thalis" during the Covid pandemic, he should have similarly given the call that there will be no untouchability in the country after January 22.

"Untouchability is a stigma on humanity. I (Prime Minister Modi) will wash away that stigma," he added.

Gehlot said that the prime minister's "aura and respect would increase" by doing this "irrespective of whether anyone likes him or not".


"I too would like it, but you (Modi) are doing 'pran pratishtha' alone," he added.

The former chief minister further said democracy is under threat, adding that premier agencies like the Income Tax Department, the Enforcement Directorate and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) were being misused.

Gehlot also hit out at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leadership over the delay in distributing portfolios to the ministers in Rajasthan.


Chief Minister Bhajan Lal Sharma, a first-time MLA, would take time to understand things, said the Congress leader, adding that he was being run with a remote control.

"I had given good wishes to the chief minister. He became the MLA for the first time and becoming the chief minister is a big opportunity. His party's high command should do justice to him. The way the party is behaving with him, he is being run with a remote control," Gehlot said.

"The formation of the council of ministers took time and now portfolios are not being distributed," he added.


Gehlot also commented on Rajasthan Director General of Police (DGP) Umesh Mishra taking voluntary retirement from service (VRS).

"The DG has taken VRS, he was a good man," he said.

Mishra, a 1989-batch Indian Police Service (IPS) officer, moved an application for voluntary retirement with immediate effect due to personal reasons with a change of government in the state.

The Rajasthan government on December 29, 2023, gave an additional charge of the DGP to Director General (Home Guards) UR Sahoo after approving Mishra’s request for voluntary retirement.