Ashok Singhal, 89, a senior Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader, passed away on Tuesday, 17th November after being treated for his respiratory problems at Medanta hospital in Gurgaon, India. Hospital sources said his condition was critical as he was on ventilator for the last few days.
Most notably Mr. Singhal is remembered as an architect of Ram Temple movement, which began in the 1980s and a role model and inspiration of RSS and VHP ‘pracharaks’ throughput the country and internationally.
Leaders cutting across political circles condoled his demise, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi who highlighted his association with Singhal as an occasional Mentor-Guide relationship.
He described Mr, Ashok Singhal as “a “force behind several noble deeds and social work”, and said his demise was a “deep personal loss” for him. “The demise of Ashok Singhal ji is a deep personal loss. He was an institution in himself, whose life was centred on serving the nation”, the Indian PrimeMinister Narendra Modi tweeted.
Though critics dubbed him a “Hindu fundamentalist”, Mr. Singhal was widely respected for his knowledge of ancient Hindu scriptures. He was also a trained metallurgical engineer. He was attached with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the ruling BJP’s ideological fountainhead, since the early 1940s.