Gandhiji, on the eve of 27th anniversary of the demolition of Babri Masjid an image was shared on social media platforms where some children were seen making sand image of the Babri Masjid in Chhan village of Sawai Madhopur district of Rajasthan. This image is telling a lot. That, justice has not been delivered in the case. That, the coming generation of Muslims will not forget Babri Masjid and that they will refuse to become the second class citizen of India.
Now on the first anniversary after the Supreme Court of India decided to hand over the disputed land to the demolishers of the mosque in Ayodhya – I beg your pardon for disturbing your soul, along with scores of others many of whom belonged to my own community. I often praised my elders for rejecting the idea of ‘Muslim Pakistan’ in 1947 who probably decided to stay back here due to age-old pluralistic culture coupled with deep imprints of their forefathers across the length and breadth of the country. But now I search for reason to defend their decision.
You flaunted the ideals of equality, justice and fraternity not only by words but through a written contract, the Constitution. But a sense of betrayal has severely gripped us after the top court failed us on November 9 this year when it delivered verdict in favour of the Hindu parties despite acknowledging the acts of planting Ram idols in 1949 in the mosque and then its demolition in 1992 criminal offences. The top court in a way forced us to succumb to the advocates of majoritarianism whose assumption reflected in the highly controversial verdict.
This seems to be the last nail, so to say, in the coffin given the records of judicial favouritism showed to the criminals in the case.
Some people scrumptiously placed idols on the intervening night of December 22-23 under the central dome of the Babri Masjid, arguing “miraculous appearance of lord Ram”. A week later, instead of removing the idols, Faizabad district court declared Babri Masjid a “disputed property” and ordered for maintaining status quo. The Muslims were barred from prayers in the mosque. On the other hand, the cahoots and crooks involved in placing the idols got a free hand by the cunning Congress administration. The Hindus got permission for prayers from a side gate. Besides, four Hindu pujaris were also employed with access to the idols. The legal battel loaded with religion and politics began, gripping the whole democratic polity of the country. In January 1986, the district court of Faizabad ordered opening of the locks of Babri Masjid and then the shilanyas ceremony – the first stone of the planned temple was put in place – was performed in 1989 to the dismay of justice-seeking people.
Apparently emboldened by judicial favour, the BJP in the late 1980s emerged to take political advantage out of it with many of its party leaders – mostly held top ministerial position later on in the government – infused ugly sense of Hindu religion and led a mob of hundreds of thousands kar sevaks (volunteers) who brazenly demolished the mosque on 6 December 1992. Cases were filed against eight individuals, namely LK Advani, MM Joshi, Uma Bharti, Ashok Singhal, Giriraj Kishore, VH Dalmia, Vinay Katiyar and Sadhvi Ritambhara. On 16 December 1992, the Centre formed one-man commission of Justice Manmohan Singh Librahan which presented its reports after 17 years, but in vain.
Does any court hold the guts to bring the perpetrators of the Babri Masjid demolition to book? No sane Indian believes so now? Do you want us Muslims to believe in judiciary in this regard?
One fails to understand how the entire system turned deaf and dumb when it came to take action against the criminals who demolished the mosque in full public view. Pathetically, many perpetrators involved in the crime later on boastful admitted to their involvement in the gory act, but the entire democratic polity appeared blind.
Not to forget that the demolition triggered wide spread communal riots across the country which culminated in the infamous serial bomb blasts in India’s commercial capital. We silently writhed in pain over the spate of organised killings of Muslims, leave aside their systematic marginalisation on socio-economic front.
However, our spy agencies, security officials and other democratic institutions showed seriousness in unearthing the links and bringing the perpetrators of Bombay bomb blasts to book. But the same vigour and swiftness were found missing in the demolition case.
Are our agencies incompetent? Frankly, I, as a Muslim, cannot afford to speak the truth.
Since we had lost hope in the system on account of gradual submission of government agencies and institutions one by one to the majoritarianism in the guise of democracy, we prefer to stop registering our woes.
However, the Muslims in their heart cherished the belief that the apex court would pass judgement – not verdict – in the Ayodhya dispute case. But the hollow edifice built around the apex court has finally fallen, reducing us to believe in the sub-ordinate citizens.
A crime was committed but after 27 years of wait the crime was legalized and the criminals were rewarded by temple of justice.
But after the apex court verdict many Muslims believe that in fact the Masjid was demolished twice first by criminals and secondly by those who sit in the temple of justice.
Gandhiji , the telling image envisages a clear meaning that the Muslim community is not prepared to let the issue go. That, fight for justice will continue. The Muslims as well as people stand for justice will not allow the fascist forces to pooh-pooh the country’s judiciary by riding on the majoritarian verdict.
Syed Zubair Ahmad