Lucknow: Bharatiya Janata Party's new Uttar Pradesh chief Keshav Prasad Maurya on Wednesday said that the Ram Janmabhoomi row was never an election issue for BJP.
Taking pot shots at the Congress, the BJP leader said the grand old party is free to build the Ram temple in Ayodhya and garner support.
While asserting that 'Ram Mandir' has never been a poll issue for the BJP, Maurya said that the party will contest the 2017 Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections on the development issue.
The Uttar Pradesh BJP chief exuded confidence that his party will win an absolute majority in assembly elections and establish 'Ram Rajya'.
Last week, the party's newly-appointed state unit chief said, Ram temple is an issue of faith and not a plank for the polls.
"Ram temple is a matter of faith, whether it is constructed through a law, court order or mutual consent, but the party will fight the Assembly election on the issue of development," he had said.
Earlier this month, the BJP named first-time MP Keshav Prasad Maurya -- who once sold tea -- to head the party in the politically crucial Uttar Pradesh.
Maurya used to sell tea and newspapers for a living during childhood. An OBC leader, he was also a full-timer with the Vishwa Hindu Parishad for 14 long years. He replaced Lakshmikant Bajpayi.