—FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE—
NEW YORK, NY (November 11, 2019) – The Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) today expressed alarm at the judgement passed by the Indian Supreme Court on the Babri Masjid case on November 9.
The Supreme Court of India passed judgment on the long disputed Babri Masjid vs Ram Temple case that has been pending with various courts in India since 1938.
We are appalled at the judgment passed in favor of building a Ram temple on the site where Babri Masjid stood for centuries. The SC has noted that there is no evidence to the claim of Hindus that Babri Masjid was built by destroying a pre-existing structure. SC has also noted that placement of idols in the masjid in 1949 was illegal and has described the demolition of Babri Masjid in 1992 as “an egregious violation of the rule of law”.
However the following contradictions were also noted:
1. SC notes that Muslims were not able to prove that they had exclusive rights to Babri masjid while not asking Hindus to prove that they had such evidence for their rights to the land either.
Retired Supreme Court Judge, Justice Markadey Katju writes “the court has observed that the Muslim side adduced no evidence to show that from 1528, when the mosque was constructed, to 1857, it was in possession of Muslims who offered namaz there. But what evidence could possibly be adduced? There cannot be any eyewitnesses alive belonging to that period… it is common sense that when a house of worship… is built, it is built for use, and not just for decoration.”
He further writes “Ouster of Muslims was not through lawful authority, and Muslims have been wrongly deprived of a mosque that had been constructed well over 450 years ago”.
2. SC has said that the judgment will be based on evidence not faith, but also said that the faith of Hindus that Babri Masjid was the birthplace of Ram is indisputable.
3. SC asked the government to provide 5-acre acres of land but the case was not whether Muslims should get an alternative piece of land, but rather to judge whether Hindu’s claims that Babri Masjid was built by destroying an ancient temple. SC agreed that Babri Masjid was not built by destroying any ancient temple, yet it judged the matter in favor of Hindus.
Such miscarriage of justice will embolden and empower fascist forces to plan similar attacks on other mosques across India. The court has accepted the demolition of Babri Masjid as an egregious violation of law, yet it has not directed the government to expedite the criminal cases against the culprits.
ICNA urges the Indian government to
1. Not rush into plans to build a temple on the disputed land unless all available legal remedies are completed.
2. Ensure that no act of violence and injustices are orchestrated against any Muslims or anyone else.
3. Expedite the criminal cases against the perpetrators of destruction of Babri Masjid.
4. Ensure that the sanctity of all places of worship of all communities is maintained by upholding the Place of Worship Act of 1991.
We also appeal to all communities and people of conscience in India to not allow hateful rhetoric from tearing the social fabric and maintain peace at all cost.
Today marks the 20th anniversary of the tragic events of September 11, 2001. It serves as both a reminder of one of the most traumatizing occurrences to unfold on American soil and as a testimony to the resilience of every community living here in America.