Mandir–Masjid Verdict: A Way Beyond
Peace is more important than Justice at a given moment. An institution where peace and humanity are taught to be established at the land allotted for the Sunni Waqf Board.
The Ayodhya verdict is a landmark in our history. Demolition of Babri masjid was an unfortunate incident which made India bows its head down in shame before the international community. It was a bloodstain on the secular fabric of India. The issue was not just of a title of the land but the overall Indian secular fabric. The judgement was pronounced by the constitution bench of 5 judges: Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, CJI-designate Sharad Arvind Bobde and Justices Dhananjaya Y.Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S. Abdul Nazeer. I accept the verdict. I must say that these judges have thought about the peaceful future of the nation while giving this judgement. The fact that there was no mention of who wrote the judgement is an unprecedented move from the judges further throws light on their will to maintain peace.The ambiguity around this issue can be better understood from the judges themselves, so I am refraining myself from commenting on it.
When we look at the judgement and the decree, it is evident that the judges do acknowledge the fact that Babri masjid was indeed demolished and that act was an egregious violation of the law. The judgement clearly states, ‘there is no proof that a temple has been demolished to construct a masjid’. I felt that the logic of judgement has been constructed in a way opposite to the final decree considering the principle of preponderance of probabilities used in the civil suit. The legal principle of equity, ‘the one seeking equity must do equity and must come before the court with clean hands’ has been overlooked in this case. The balance of justice tilted towards the parties who demolished Babri masjid and came to the court with bloodstained hands.There was a heavy burden to prove possession on one party and it was made light upon the other. Whatever the reasons behind that maybe, I accept the judgement of the Supreme Court. Maybe the judges gave such a decree because they know who are the real perpetrators of communal violence in the country. They know that it is only through such a decree that peace can be maintained; thereby, they can fulfil the trust placed on them by the citizens of India. If the decree was in favour of the Waqf board, only God knows what this country would be forced to go through. So, the minorities in the country must feel honoured through this decree, as it displays the trust the court has on them to behave diligently despite the loss.
In the five-acre land decreed for the Sunni Waqf Board, I wish that an institution where humanity is taught to be established.
A centre for religious harmony and coexistence, an institution of international standards—an international humanity centre. This centre must promote, perpetuate humanitarian values to the world. It must become the guiding light of humanity and remove the darkness veiling the hearts of common people in India. We must use the Humanitarian values to bring peace and harmony to the world. That is the way shown to us by Prophet Muhammad that is the lesson from the lives of the companions of the Prophet. That is what those who claim to be followers of Prophet Muhammed must do.
Ayodhya is believed to be the birthplace of Ram Lalla but no one denies the fact that there was a masjid and it was demolished. The people involved in it are still roaming free. The criminal trial is moving slower than a snail. India was not the same after Babri masjid’s demolition. A lot of people lost their lives, properties were destroyed, and communal tensions escalated, the politics of Ram Mandir was cashed in by right-wing forces and political parties to get into power.
The mandir–masjid politics has hurt the Hindu community as much as the Muslim community.
The Hindus and Muslims have been played to become a mere vote bank.
The political masters have used this issue to hide real issues like economic crisis, unemployment, increasing healthcare costs, increase in the price of essential commodities, etc. All these years, Indians have suffered because of these unethical political practices. And for Babri masjid’s demolition, the wounds are fresh as new and the consequences are still continuing. Will this decree mark the end of mandir–masjid politics? We will have to wait and see. I pray that this issue is not further cashed in electoral politics and other socio-economic engagements.
Everyone wants justice! But sometimes, Peace is more important than Justice at a given moment. Let us respect the verdict of the court and work towards peaceful coexistence with non-violent conflict resolution. Let us take an oath that we will never fall prey for the mandir–masjid politics that divide us ever again. Let us pledge to force our government and political parties to focus on the ‘real issues’ than manipulating people to vote for them through creating proxy issues; especially politicising religion. Let us pledge to work for peace.