To assert her place within the state management and align with the broader ideology of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), former Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje has been on a two day temple run coinciding and culminating together with her birthday on Monday.
On Sunday and Monday, Raje visited nearly a dozen temples, primarily in Bharatpur and in adjoining Mathura in Uttar Pradesh. Over two days, she visited Poonchhari Ka Lautha in Bharatpur and worshipped Lautha Baba. She additionally visited Laxman Temple in Deeg, and throughout the border, she visited the Daan Ghati temple in Mathura, in addition to Giriraj temple in Jatipura, and supplied her prayers.
On Monday she started her birthday with a mangla aarti at Aadi Badri Nath temple in Bharatpur and likewise climbed 350 stairs at Kedarnath Temple in Kaman, Bharatpur, a part of the Braj Chaurasi Kos Yatra.
Her yatra is being seen as a present of energy: At her public programmes and alongside the route of the yatra, as many as 9 MPs, 31 incumbent MLAs, 97 former MLAs, 26 former BJP candidates for 2018 Assembly elections, 42 former district presidents, 11 former MPs, and 18 leaders, who got political appointments by her, had been throwing their weight behind her.
However, it’s also, importantly, a bid to painting her picture as a religious. At Aadi Badri Nath on Monday, Raje stated “people are seeing their programme as a shakti pradarshan (show of strength). Perhaps they do not know that this isn’t a shakti pradarshan, but bhakti pradarshan (display of devotion).”
As some BJP leaders are recasting their picture as hardliners – Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan being a living proof – Raje, seen as one of many previous couple of liberals throughout the get together, faces a frightening job to reconcile with get together’s central management – which has tried to undermine her place within the state unit repeatedly – and this consists of an ideological shift.
Part of that try at reconciliation is to undo the remaining bits of that picture. On Monday, Raje stated “this programme doesn’t have rajneeti (politics), but dharm-neeti (religion), the path which I have been on since the beginning…because my mother taught me to be on this path. Inspired by her, I tried to make Rajasthan a religious state.”
At Poonchhari Ka Lautha on Sunday, she identified that her mom had “lit a lamp and made the lotus blossom.” Raje’s mom Vijaya Raje Scindia was related to Jana Sangh – which had a lamp as its image – and went on to develop into one of many founding members of the BJP which has a lotus as its image.
Raje stated that her mom had “BJP and nationalism running through her veins and I am her daughter.” She additionally stated that it was a “happy coincidence that the holy stones from the area of Krishna’s birthplace are being utilised to build a beautiful Ram Mandir at Ram Janmabhoomi.”
The former CM stated that she has a particular devotion in direction of the land and therefore her authorities had ensured developmental works to the tune of Rs 200 crores for Brij Chaurasi Kosi and Sapt Kosi Parikrama. On Monday, she stated that her authorities had helped set up “religious tourism” within the state, “by developing 125 temples with around Rs 550 crores and establishing a panorama of about 40 gods, goddesses and great men with Rs 110 crores.”
“But today, people sitting in the government don’t follow dharm-neeti, but rajneeti, and indulge in politics when it comes to development. The government is caught up in its own politics, and hence Rajasthan’s development has stopped,” she stated.
With the temple run, Raje additionally hopes to appease the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS); in her earlier tenure, her authorities was on a warpath with the RSS over demolition of a number of massive and small temples in Jaipur, underneath the district administration’s drive towards unlawful buildings – according to Supreme Court orders – adopted by demolition and relocation of a handful of previous temples within the Walled City to make method for Jaipur Metro.
While RSS had referred to as for a chakka jam towards the demolitions, Vishwa Hindu Parishad leaders had referred to as her “a pseudo secular.”