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Replace Mosques with Temples in Mathura and Varanasi: Hindu Parishad Chief Pravin Togadia

On Friday, November 24, Pravin Togadia, chief of the Antarashtriya Hindu Parishad (AHP), stirred controversy by calling for the replacement of mosques with temples in the historic cities of Mathura, Ayodhya, and Varanasi.

Known for his charged anti-Muslim speeches, Togadia said that the time had come for Mathura and Kashi, pointing at the recently constructed Ram temple in Ayodhya.

“With the blessings of Ram, the Ayodhya temple stands tall. Now is the time for Mathura and Kashi,” Togadia declared, chanting, “Ayodhya Mathura Vishwanath, teeno lenge ek sath” (will take all three together), referencing the mosques in Mathura and Varanasi.

On November 22 in Sonipat, Haryana, he claimed that Muslims were taking over parks and posing a threat to businesses. Additionally, he propagated conspiracy theories about the “growing Muslim population posing a threat.

Togadia’s statements come amid ongoing tensions surrounding the Ayodhya site, where a Ram temple is under construction. The Supreme Court, in a landmark 2019 decision, granted the land to Hindus and allocated a separate plot for Muslims.

While the construction of the Ram temple is underway, work on the mosque is yet to begin.

The Ayodhya dispute has deep historical roots, with Hindus claiming the site as the birthplace of Lord Ram, while Muslims argue the Babri mosque was built on the ruins of a temple in 1528. The mosque’s destruction in 1992 led to widespread riots, resulting in the death of around 2,000 people, primarily Muslims.

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