India’s new Rama temple holds three implications

By January 25, 2024

India (MNN) — A controversial site in northern India is now home to a Hindu temple, stirring tensions among the Muslim community.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicated the temple to the Hindu god Rama earlier this week. Muslim onlookers remember a 16th-century mosque in the exact location that Hindu mobs destroyed in 1992.

Todd Nettleton with The Voice of the Martyrs USA says the temple’s construction sends three messages. First, “You have this message of Hinduism being superior over Islam,” Nettleton says.

Second, the temple is a rallying cry for Modi supporters before national elections.

“This is a great symbolic victory for him to show, ‘Look, I’m the defender of Hinduism. I’m the man who made this happen. Vote for me in two more months.’”

Third, a message to India’s religious minorities: “‘This is a Hindu nation, a pure Hindu nation,’”

“‘If you are not a Hindu; if you’re a Christian or a Muslim, you are an impurity. You don’t belong here.’”

Hindu-Muslim disparities extend beyond northern India.

Glimpses of Pran Pratishtha ceremony of Shree Ram Janmaboomi Temple in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh on January 22, 2024. PM presents on the occasion.
(Photo and caption courtesy of Prime Minister’s Office (GODL-India)/Wikimedia Commons)

“I spoke with someone very familiar with what’s happening in India yesterday. He said this is not the only place where mosques are being torn down or destroyed, and then Hindu temples are built on the same site,” Nettleton says.

“There is a very high potential for violence in the coming months. This temple being built over a mosque is a ‘thumb in the eye’ of Indian Muslims.”

Ask the Lord to protect His followers in northern India. Pray believers will trust in God’s sovereignty.

“Yes, their government is completely opposed to the Gospel and the church. But God is still on the throne,” Nettleton says.

“Pray for a sense of hopefulness and encouragement for our brothers and sisters in India.”



In the header image, Hindu devotees and visitors celebrate the Prana Pratishtha ceremony outside the temple on January 22, 2024. (Photo and caption courtesy of Prime Minister’s Office (GODL-India)/Wikimedia Commons)

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