The Samajwadi Party has claimed that the temple of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in Bharatkund was built by a "BJP supporter" to "capture" private land.
In a tweet, the SP also attached a newspaper article in which a native of Ayodhya has alleged that his nephew got the temple constructed on his land on the Faizabad-Prayagraj highway, 25 km away from the under-construction Ram Mandir, without his permission.
Bharatkund is believed to be the place where Lord Ram's younger brother Bharat bade him farewell before he went into exile.
In a complaint sent to the Chief Minister on September 21 through the grievance redressal Jansunwai portal, complainant Ramnath Maurya, a resident of Kalyan Bhadarsa, alleged that the land on which Adityanath's temple has been built was initially owned by him and his late elder brother Jagannath Maurya.
However, the property was divided, and after Jagannath passed away, his son Prabhakar Maurya allegedly kept the entire parcel of land to himself without giving Ramnath his share.
Prabhakar is the one who got Mr. Adityanath's temple constructed. It has a life-size idol of the Chief Minister, with a bow and arrows, and a halo around his head. The idol is clad in a saffron robe.
Special prayers are being offered twice every day at the temple. Prasad is also distributed to "devotees".
Ramnath further alleged that Prabhakar was also eyeing to capture a piece of government land adjacent to the temple.
Pointing to the complaint, Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav asked Mr. Adityanath if he will take action against the 'land mafia' or a special squad from Delhi will be sent after the accused.
"The uncle of the person who has built the temple has complained to the Chief Minister himself that it has been built with the intention of taking illegal possession of his land. Now, the Chief Minister should tell whether he will take action against the 'land mafia' or a special squad will arrive from Delhi," he said in a tweet on Friday.
The SP separately issued a tweet from its official handle in which it attached the newspaper report carrying the complainant's version against his nephew and said, "The biggest land mafia is the BJP! To capture the barren land in Ayodhya, BJP supporters built a temple of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on it. Very embarrassing! How much more will the BJP stoop? Get the matter investigated and take action against the culprits under the National Security Act." The revenue department in Ayodhya, however, said it was not aware of the matter and would get it investigated in case a complaint is lodged.
Sohawal Tehsildar Pawan Kumar, under whose jurisdiction the village falls, said, the administration was not aware of the matter and it would be probed if a complaint is received.
BJP's State unit spokesman Harish Chand Srivastava said the local administration under the Yogi Adityanath government will investigate the matter to find out the facts.
"Such a reaction from a former Chief Minister, national president of a party and Leader of Opposition is very superficial," he said.