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Tughlaqabad temple row: Union Minister Hardeep Puri says determined to file solution, meets LG

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(Eds: Adding details of AAP MLA Somnath Bharti's meeting with LG) New Delhi, Aug 13 (PTI) Amid a row over demolition of a Guru Ravidas temple in forest area in Tughlaqabad, Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Tuesday said the Centre is determined to find a solution and possibly identify an alternative site to "relocate" it. The Union Housing and Urban Affairs Minister also met Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal and discussed several issues, including the Supreme Court order to vacate the site of Guru Ravidas temple. "We, along with Vice Chairman of DDA, are determined to find a solution and possibly identify an alternative site where the temple can be relocated. "We have also suggested to the affected parties to appeal to Hon'ble Court to issue necessary directions in this regard," Puri tweeted. DDA member and Malviya Nagar MLA Somnath Bharti said he raised the issue in a separate meeting held with the LG on Tuesday and demanded that the temple must reinstated at the same location. "The LG said he would definitely look into the issue," Bharti told PTI over phone. On Tuesday, a complete shutdown was observed in parts of Punjab in response to a bandh call given by Dalit groups to protest against the demolition. There were also stray incidents of violence. Protesters blocked roads at a few places including the Jalandhar-Delhi national highway causing huge traffic jams, officials said. On Monday, Delhi Social Welfare Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi's intervention in ensuring that the "land be given back" to the community to rebuild the place of worship. Addressing a press conference, Pal had alleged that the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), in presence of a police force, had demolished the "temple" on Saturday morning and the statue was "taken away". However, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), in a statement issued on Monday, did not use the word temple and said the "structure was removed as per the orders of the Supreme Court". "The standing 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 said in the statement. PTI BUN UZM RT

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