Firebrand BJP leader Sangeet Som stoked a huge controversy after he said that the Gyanvapi Mosque, which was adjacent to the famous Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Varanasi, would be demolished like the Babri Masjid.
"Babri Masjid was demolished in 1992, now it is the turn of Gyanvapi Mosque...we will demolish it in 2022," Som said while speaking at a function at Meerut, about 450 kilometres from here, on Monday.
"Muslim invaders had constructed the mosque after demolishing the temple....the time has come to take it back," Som, who was also an accused in the 2013 Muzaffarnagar communal riots case, said.
"They (Muslims) should have known this (demolition of Gyanvapi Mosque) the day the Babri Masjid was demolished.....they should have known which way is the country moving...we will not leave any such mosque and demolish all of them," he added.
He said that Ramlala (idol of Rama) had to remain in tarpaulin for several years but now a grand Ram Temple was being constructed. "Not a brick of Babri Masjid can be found today....the same will happen to Gyanvapi Mosque also," Som said.
He claimed that the Muslim side was 'deliberately' creating obstacles in the way of survey of the Kashi Vishwanath Complex as it knew that there were proofs of a temple inside the Gyanvapi Moasque.
Sangeet Som had contested the recently concluded UP assembly polls from Sardhana seat but lost to Samajwadi Party (SP) candidate Atul Pradhan.
Earlier also the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) had called for ‘liberating' Kashi Vishwanath Temple and the Shri Krsihna Janmabhoomi in Mathura. The All India Akhara Parishad (AIAP), an apex body of the seers in the country, had also said that the fight for the Ram Temple had ended and now it was the turn of Kashi and Mathura. "Kashi and Mathura are also blots for the Hindus...they must also be freed," a prominent seer associated with the AIAP had said.