Scores of people marching to offer prayers at the Ravidas temple site in the Tughlakabad area on Tuesday, a month after it was demolished on Supreme Court orders, were stopped by police just short of the location.
Close to a hundred people, who had gathered at the Guru Ravidas Marg here and marched towards the temple site, performed rituals on the road after they were stopped.
“We have made adequate security arrangements and have not allowed the people to reach the site. The rituals were performed very peacefully,” Joint Commissioner of Police (Southern Range) Devesh Srivastava said.
The Guru Ravidas Temple Sanyukt Sangharsh Samiti, one of the organisations that protested the demolition, has said prayers will be offered at the site on the 10th of every month till the temple is reconstructed.
“We will perform rituals on the 10th of every month as the temple was demolished on August 10. We are going to meet the sants in Haryana, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh and there will be a grand puja on October 10,” Ashok Bharti, spokesman of the Guru Ravidas Movement, told PTI.
The samiti has asked the government to ensure the return of the temple land to the Guru Ravi Das Jayanti Samaroh Samiti at the earliest and withdraw all cases against those arrested after a protest against the demolition turned violent last month, he said.
The committee members had met senior Delhi Police officers and ensured that the rituals will be performed peacefully.
“Earlier, we were asked to perform the rituals at Jantar Mantar but the committee members met senior Delhi Police officers and ensured them that there would be no violence this time and as per planned, the rituals were performed peacefully,” Bharti added.
The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) had demolished the structure on August 10 following court orders. In a statement issued last month, the body said the “structure was removed as per the orders of the Supreme Court”.
“The standing semi-permanent structure was dismantled peacefully without any resistance or use of force in the presence of Guru Ravi Das Jayanti Samaroh Samiti members,” the DDA had said.