A week after the Supreme Court verdict on the Ayodhya dispute, various Assamese Muslim organisations have decided to donate a total of Rs 6 lakh towards building the Ram Temple at Ayodhya.
Syed Mominul Aowal, convenor of the Janagosthiya Samannway Parishad, a co-ordination committee of 21 Assamese Muslim organisation, said, "Soon after the trust to build the Ram Temple is constituted, we will hand over Rs 5 lakhs as donation through the chief minister of Assam.”
Aowal, who is also a BJP leader and the chairman of the Assam Minority Development Board, says that the move has nothing to do with his political party, and should be read as the common will of all the constituent groups of the co-ordination committee.
Apart from the Janagosthiya Samannway Parishad, another organisation representing the Assamese Muslim community, the Sadau Assam Goriya Moriya Desi Yuba Chatra Parishad, also pledged an amount of Rs 1 lakh for the temple.
Mainul Haque, the president of the organisation, said to the media that very soon, a cheque of Rs 1 lakh would be handed over to the chief minister.
Manirul Islam Bora, president of the Ujoni Assam Muslim Kalyan Parishad, one of the constituents of the Janagosthiya Samannway Parishad, said, "An amount of Rs 6 lakh is an insignificant one, given the gargantuan task of building a majestic Ram temple in Ayodhya. But it is a gesture of goodwill from the Assamese Muslim community towards the Hindu brothers.”
Bora added that it is in any case prohibited in Islam to pray at a disputed place, and so, there is nothing wrong if a temple is built in Ayodhya in place of the Babri Masjid.
“The Babri mosque had long lost its status as a place of worship on account of the dispute. Even if the disputed land were handed over to the Muslims, praying there would have been in violation of the principles of Islam. We do not see any reason why, as ardent followers of Islam, we should violate the holy book,” he said.
Hafizul Ahmed, president of the Goriya Moriya Desi Jatiya Parishad, said that those who believe in democracy should accept the Supreme Court verdict and help in its implementation. “The issue at hand is not about legal arguments, or about winning or losing. It is about fortifying our democracy with the right kind of messages,” he said.
Ahmed said that the donation of Rs 6 lakh is a gesture of goodwill, and a way to let the Hindu community know that the legal dispute is over, and it is time to build a unified society.
These organisations have also opposed AIMIL leader Asaduddin Owaisi's stand on the Ayodhya dispute. Hafizul Ahmed said, "India cannot be seen through the prism of one person or one community alone...Such tirades do not help in enhancing brotherhood among communities. Owaisi is politicising the issue. We must not politicise it further.”
Similarly, Mominul Aowal said, "Owaisi seems to be speaking a foreign narrative, which reeks of fundamentalism. It cannot be the voice of Indian Muslims who believe in Indian culture.”
Owaisi, while criticising the Supreme Court verdict, had recently said, “Our fight was not for a piece of land. It was to ensure that my legal rights are realised. The Supreme Court also categorically said that no temple was demolished to construct a mosque. I want my masjid back."
In contrast to the stand of the Janagosthiya Samannway Parishad, the Assam chapter of Jamiat-Ulama-I-Hind said, "Though we respect and accept the verdict, it does not seem to have adhered to the principles of the Constitution. The disputed land was allotted to the same people who erased a five hundred-year-old aspect of history. I do not think it was the best thing to do,” said Maulana Fazlul Karim Qasimi, secretary of the Assam chapter of the front.
He disagreed with the argument that it is not permitted in Islam to pray on a mosque built on disputed land. Qasimi said, "We have the Indian Constitution which gives us equal rights as people of all other faiths. The rights of the Muslims should have been judged as per constitutional principles, and not on religious principles,” he said.
Interestingly, the Jamiat-Ulama-I-Hind has in the past vehemently championed the idea of allowing Muslims to live according to Islamic principles. Its Assam chief Badruddin Ajmal had fought tooth and nail against the triple talaq bill. The same organisation now appears to giving pre-eminence to constitutional principles rather than Islamic ones.
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Updated Date: Nov 17, 2019 19:05:23 IST