Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday paid tribute to Ashok Singhal, one of the leaders of the Ram Janmabhoomi movement, saying his struggle for the cause was commendable. Shah said Singhal served the country and religion as a monk for all his life, despite coming from a very rich family, renouncing all happiness and splendour. "His struggle for Ram Janmabhoomi and Ram Sethu movement and awakening the religion was commendable. I pay tribute to him on his death anniversary," he said in a tweet.
Singhal was the international working president of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad for over 20 years and was deeply involved in the Ayodhya Ram Janmabhoomi movement. He died on November 17, 2015, at the age of 89. The Supreme Court in a historic verdict on November 9 backed the construction of a Ram temple by a government trust at the disputed site in Ayodhya and ruled that an alternative five-acre plot must be found for a mosque in the Hindu holy town.
In a separate tweet, the home minister also fondly remembered one of the icons of the freedom struggle Lala Lajpat Rai, saying he continues to be an inspiration for the countrymen and a symbol of patriotism. "It is a reflection of his unwavering love and respect for the country and culture for India. This grateful nation will never forget Lalaji's sacrifice," he said. Rai played a pivotal role in the country's freedom struggle. He passed away on November 17, 1928.