Reconstruction of Sri Ram Mandir is a matter of faith and sentiment for millions of Hindus, not only in Bharat, but around the globe. The issue was messed-up by anti-Hindu forces who are now acting as Shiv Bhakts
Who is responsible for the ongoing Ram Mandir controversy or faux pas? Quite often, media and intellectuals blame communal diehards on both sides of the fence. They single out and villainess few. In the forefront are the RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal and other Hindu organisations.
Proposed structure of Sri Ram Mandir in Ayodhya
Next in the firing line are the main right wing political parties – BJP, Shiv Sena etc. Rarely ever they criticize the diabolical role played by Sunni and Shia Muslim political parties alongside the pseudo secular parties spearheaded by the Congress Party in the lead. Hardly ever the procrastinating and prevaricating role played by the judiciary gets highlighted.
Kar sevaks demolishing the dsputed structure in Ayodhya
Let me recall the irrefutable fact of the three-judge Supreme Court bench hearing of the Babri Masjid’s case - ten times - what with the recent one in July 2018. Yet, it struggled to decide if the matter should be referred to a constitution bench of five or more judges instead of as an ordinary title dispute.
Why the exception by the Supreme Court in the Ram Mandir issue? After all, in recent times, the Supreme Court constitution benches have adjudicated highly emotive and sensitive cases like instant triple talaq, passive euthanasia, Delhi statehood case, Sabarimala temple entry ban case and Parsi ex-communication case. So its dilly dallying or hesitation in referring the issue to the constitution bench (Article 145(3) of the constitution mandates any case involving a substantial question of law relating to constitutional interpretation) is quite inexplicable.
Justice delayed, Justice Denied
High time “Judiciary” practices what it preaches and must uphold: “Justice delayed is Justice denied”. Is the Supreme Court culpable of indulging in “passing the buck” game to political leadership only to be followed by passing strictures and finding faults against any political decision?
Even the partisan media is also part of the problem complexity. Some of them are culpable of not sharing ‘facts’ of the dispute accurately to people. To compound the issue, media speculation over “issue of Ordinance” or “Tabling of Law” in the Lok Sabha as a political imperative or compulsion of Modi led BJP/NDA.
Facts of Babri Masjid are available in public domain. Neither Babur nor his General Mir Baqi constructed the Masjid when analyzed from Archeological evidence. Babur Nama, an authentic record of events of Babur, does not mention the name of Ayodhya or a visit to such a name place.
Stating the obvious, the disputed structure at Ayodhya was demolished on December 6, 1992 familiarly referred in the media as the “Black Sunday.” Media publicised it and blamed communalists on either side besides the politicians. The government started rolling heads – bureaucrats at local and State level were changed. Judiciary remained a silent spectator.
Let me recount the findings of the Archeological Survey of India (ASI) ordered by the Allahabad High Court after a lapse of over a decade in March 5, 2003, to excavate the disputed site in order to determine whether a temple existed where the mosque stood. The ASI found features of 10th Century temple and submitted its report to the Allahabad High Court in August 2003.
Furthermore, the past authentic records of communal conflicts are available in public domain. The first recorded bloody conflict occurred during the years 1853-55. In the first conflict, a rebel Priest who turned Maulvi, attempted to capture the Shrine. He was killed by the combined forces of Nawab Wajid Ali Shah of Avad and the British led by the First Irregular Infantry. The death toll was estimates vary between 120 and 700. Subsequently in 1855, the Muslims captured the shrine. But by a fierce counter attack, the Hindu Bairagis recaptured it and killed 75 Muslims.
Quite prophetic is the reflection of K N Panikar, Professor of Modern History, JNU, who stated after the Babri Masjid demolitions: “While the partition was culmination of the communal movement, Ajodhya is not necessarily the end. It might well be the beginning of a major political catastrophe”.
The Legal Battles
Next, the legal battles to include: filing of suits in 1950 by Mahant Paramhans Ramchandra Das and Gopal Singh in Faizabad, and puja allowed); 1959: filing of cases in 1959 by Nirmohi Akhara and others seeking permission to conduct prayers); filing of case in 1961 by Sunni Central Board of Waqfs in UP claiming the mosque; and, Faizabad District Judge orders to open the gates for Hindus to offer prayers in 1986 followed by formation of Babri Action Committee and shifting the case to the High Court.
Also, on All India Muslim Personal Law Board challenging the ASI report, the High Court reserved its judgment and advised all parties to solve the issue amicably in July 26, 2010. In September 23, the plea for an out-of-court settlement reached Supreme Court and the apex body said it would hear it again on September 28. Subsequently, the High Court announced to pronounce the verdict on September 24, but deferred the judgment on a writ petition that was rejected later. However, the apex court rejected petition for deferment and gave the nod to the Allahabad High court to deliver the judgment.
The Allahabad High Court pronounced its verdict on September 30, and ruled for a three-way division of the disputed area, between the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and the party for ‘Ram Lalla’.
In February 26, 2016, the Supreme Court permitted BJP leader Subramanian Swamy to intervene in the pending matters relating to the Ajodhya dispute with his plea seeking construction of Ram temple at the site of the demolished disputed structure.
Yet another issue making rounds quite often is forging “amicable out of court settlement” between the two parties in the court case, which has also defied problem resolution.
In sum, the communal conflict in Ayodhya needs to be viewed from historical, social, judicial and political factors. Certainly, it cannot be viewed from the prism of post independence RSS-BJP inspired political problem. After all, communal violence has been recurring feature over nearly the past 170 years and more.
Nehru and Rajiv Gandhi too had favored Hindu stand point of view by their actions in 1949 (idols of Lord Ram appeared inside the mosque, and both sides filed cases. The government declared the site as disputed and locked the gates to it) and 1989 (Rajiv Gandhi allowed shilanyas). Even the legal battles have been ongoing over the past 68 years.
Social Dimension of the Issue
Next, social dimension, particularly Hindus hurt psyche, must be appreciated in historical context. Historic-analytically, the theory of waning Hinduism is real. It is under a virtual siege on its own soil. From the dizzy heights of nearly 50% of World population in 001 AD, its slide to 14% is real today. Any visionary Hindu should be able to see the writing on the wall clearly – the dooms day for the Hinduism is not too far off, if pseudo-secularism is persisted with the monotonous consistency of “Gabardine Swine”. It is the last of ancient religions. It has every reason and right to protect its own interests on its own soil.
Today, the Hindu feels belittled, betrayed and embittered in the international environment. They must not, therefore, further compound the hurt psyche of the Hindu. He feels unwanted and despised even in USA today what with Trumps “White Supremacist” upsurge. They must also realize that the Hindu philosophy is based on the invocation of Dharm Yudh or righteous battle. Driven psychologically to the brink of despair, the Hindu polarisation, mobilisation and consolidation processes may only hasten-up. In my perception, the process of consolidation will become irreversible in the face of continued affronts and threats to their status and survival. As per M N Buch, the Hindu psyche is deeply wounded and those who try to hurt it more, because, to them, secularism means an anti-Hindu stance will, in fact, strengthen those very communal forces who foresee the national flag as having only one color – “Saffron”.
Let me reiterate with all conviction that the secular option or bogey is a mere illusion or mirage or unachievable in our emerging demographics conundrum what with Muslim population surge in highly strategic sensitive borders. Yet another vital issue which needs to be correctly understood is the façade or double face of a majority of the Hindus. Many of them claim outwardly to be secularists, but sub consciously support and stand of radical Hindus. What they fail to understand is that by double standards, they are only further consolidating Pan-Islamic fundamentalism detrimental to the Hindus.
To sum up, both communities thrive on strong complexes rooted in history. If Muslim communalists specialized in raising the bogey of Islam in danger in the past, now the Hindu communalists are raising a similar bogey of Hinduism in danger.