In a 10-page submission filed by Mrs. GauriAdvani (Daughter-in-Law of LK Advani and the wife of Jayant Advani) to the Liberhan Commission bringing out the conspiracies behind Babri Masjid demolition before the commission, she says:
“That right after SomnathYatra in 1990, during and after the demolition of the Babri mosque, LK Advani got various silver gifts in the form of Hindu gods and goddesses, swords and bricks from Hindu individuals, associations and temples. Since LK Advani and his family members do not follow Hinduism, all these silver items/gifts were melted in Bombay (with the help of Sarla Advani who is sister of Kamla Advani and lives in Bombay) to make silver utensils and cutlery items. LK Advani used to claim at home that he does not believe in Hindu gods and goddesses and keeping them at home serves no useful purpose. LK Advani therefore, decided to melt these gift items to use the silver to make the utensils and cutlery items. In fact, on many occasions, the applicant had with a heavy heart helped Kamla Advani in packing all these silver gift items associated with the Hindu religion in bags which Sarla Advani used to carry to Bombay by a train. She always used to travel by train because the baggage is not checked as it is done in the air journey. These silver utensils and cutlery items are being used in the house of LK Advani.”
Mrs. Gauri Advani, who is a key witness to the whole inside stories of Ram Janmabhoomi Movement and who also is a solicitor in London, says:
“LK Advani started his rath yatra on 1 December 1992 from Varanasi. Before the start of the RathYatra, Vinay Katiyar came to meet LK Advani. The applicant was also present in this meeting. It was in this meeting, LK Advani and Vinay Katiyar in the presence of the applicant, conspired to demolish the Babri mosque and discussed the details and finer aspects involved in the action plan to demolish the Babri mosque. LK Advani told Vinay Katiyar that the ultimate aim of the rath yatra, which he had been undertaking right from 1990 and the build up to kar seva by mobilising the Ram Bhakt Brick movement, is not only to do kar seva and appease Hindu sentiments but also to garner and muster votes and come to power at the Centre. LK Advani categorically linked religion, exploitation of Hindu sentiments and the opportunity to do the kar seva with the real aim of benefiting BJP politically by mustering the Hindu vote bank. He also discussed that in order to create a strong Hindu vote bank, which would vote for BJP, the time has come to encash the Hindu sentiments by carrying out the demolition of the Babri mosque. LK Advani told Vinay Katiyar that the movement to build a Ram Temple at Babri mosque had to be taken to its logical end, i.e. coming to power at the Centre and that would not be possible without demolishing the Babri mosque as that will unite the Hindu vote bank in favour of the BJP.
“While leaving to start the rath yatra, LK Advani told Vinay Katiyar that the right opportunity has come and since a large number of kar sevaks would be congregating in Ayodhya for kar seva, demolition can easily be done. The applicant remembers that LK Advani said ‘Iska kaam kar do,’ then again said ‘Kya Babri Masjid ka kalank nahin mit sakta’. Vinay Katiyar looked at the applicant and then said to LK Advani that ‘Ham to aapke aadesh ka intazar kar rahen hain, aur agar aap bole to masjid ka namo-nishaan mita de.’ LK Advani at that time smiled and then said ‘To intzar kis baat ka, kaam kar do, gulaami ke nishaan kab tak rahenge. Masjid ko dhawasth karke dikhao – sahi samay aagaya hai.’ After this, LK Advani left the meeting to start the rath yatra. The applicant and Kamla Advani came back to Delhi....
“That a big fraud has been perpetrated on this great Nation, Hindu masses and on this Hon’ble Commission by LK Advani. LK Advani and his family do not follow Hinduism and they did not permit the applicant to do Puja at home. In fact, in the privacy of LK Advani’s home, Hinduism is ridiculed, scoffed and made fun of whereas in public LK Advani claims himself to be the guardian and symbol of Hinduism, as he did in the guise of Lord Rama on top of the Ram Rath. All these claims are false, bogus and fabricated to advance his political career by playing a fraud on the sentiments of Hindu masses and to hoodwink them into forming a vote bank which has been used by his party to come to power at the Centre.” (Milli Gazette Vol:3 No:3)
If the Babri Masjid was really built after unjustly demolishing a Ram Temple and if the Ram believers of this time really want the temple to be built again on the same place, then no doubt the Muslims are ready for a settlement. But the issue of Babri Masjid is not based on an innocent ‘belief’ of Ram Janmasthan. The Ayodhya movement is a political issue raised by the sangh parivar and the BJP to come to power at the centre. In fact, even Lal Krishna Advani who had played the key role in raising the Ram Temple Movement himself does not have any faith in Hinduism and its mythologies. Ram Temple is not a matter of faith but a religious card without which BJP cannot come to power.
ANALYSIS OF THE VERDICT
It is the first time in world history that a court in a secular country makes a mythical hero into a historical reality by spotting its birthplace! Paradoxically, even the leaders of sangh parivar had earlier reiterated that the issue of Ram Janmabhoomi is a matter of mere faith and had rejected the authority of courts in the matter! In fact, justice must be blind, in a sense impartial and objective and arguments must be weighed only on the grounds of evidences. Unfortunately, after 60 years of legal battle the Allahabad High Court pronounced the judgement on the basis of astha and belief. This is the burial of rule of law. The core of the case on the title suit lies on the question, who is the real owner of the disputed land. Instead of giving verdict on this central dispute on the basis of evidences, the court has made a settlement formula to divide the land into three (un)equal parts. That too was favouring the arguments of sangh parivar, about Ram Janmasthan.
The following are some of the relevant questions that need to be raised after the judgement:
According to the court verdict on ‘title suit’, who is the real owner of the ‘disputed land’?
If the title is for Hindus then how come one third is given to Muslims?
When was Ram born? When and where was Ram’s Samadhi?
(As per court documents, a statement made by a very popular Hindu priest while answering questions in the court said that Ram was born before 9 lakh years! Ironically, no man existed on the face of earth before 9 lakh years! And the place of Samadhi is more important than the place of birth as per any faith.)
Is ‘Ramayana’ is a mythology or a factual history document?
It is evident that there is difference of opinion (beliefs) within the Hindu scholars on the location of “Ayodhya” and the exact spot of Ram Janmasthan. What was the court’s logic of spotting the exact Janmasthan nullifying all other ‘beliefs’?
The court document submitted by the poojari of Ram chabutra, Mahant Raghuvardas on 1885 (125 years back) to Faizabad court says that the place of central dome is masjid and permission must be granted to do pooja rituals in Ram Chabutra. And the court too agrees that Ram Lalla stones were smuggled into masjid and fixed in the place of central dome on 22/23 Dec 1949 with a new claim. It means the claim of Ram Janmasthan on the central dome of masjid was made recently. One of the judges in the judgment said: “That for some decades before 1949 Hindus started treating/believing the places beneath the central dome of mosque (where at present a makeshift temple stands) to be exact birthplace of Lord Ram”. How can the court say ‘the place is worshipped by Hindus from times immemorial’?
What is the court’s logic of defining ‘faith’? If Hindu faith is defined by Hindu scriptures, which is the authentic text which spots Ram Janmasthan?
Did ASI submit a single unambiguous tangible excavation evidence of a demolished Ram temple? If so what was it? (One of the judges has clearly stated in his judgement: “No temple was demolished for constructing the mosque.” Gist of the findings by SU Khan – No:3)
If tomorrow people of different faiths without evidences start to believe and make claims on lands and constructions, on what grounds will the court judge?
The High Court says, the land existed as a property of joined ownership of Hindus and Muslims for a long period starting from 1859 and the solution must be equal division of the land. How can the division be on the grounds of only one party’s unproved religious belief, when the other party does not share the same belief?
The whole issue is related with the historicity of the claim of Ram Janmasthan. In the judgment, one judge stated that he did not delve into the historical aspect since he was not a historian but went to say that history and archaeology were not absolutely essential to decide these suits! Least to say regarding the judgement is that both parties did not expect a layman’s judgement to come from a court of law.
The intelligentsia worldwide, civil right activists and historians had unanimously questioned the credibility and logic of the Lucknow bench Babri Masjid verdict. Justice Rajinder Sachar (Former Chief Justice of Delhi High Court) in a statement said, “Now it is obvious to the meanest intelligence that it is impossible to prove that the birthplace of Lord Ram was under the masjid – it may be a matter of faith, genuine or contrived or otherwise, but that is no proof, nor can it ever be put forward as a legal ground to take away the land from the mosque... Babri Masjid had been in existence for over 400 years till it was demolished by goons of the VHP/RSS in 1992. Legally speaking, the Sangh Parivar would have no right even if a temple had been demolished to build Babri Masjid.” Rajeev Dhavan, Lawyer of Supreme Court, has compared the destruction of the Masjid to the demolition of the Buddha statues at Bamiyan in Afghanistan.
It is also unfortunate that the Allahabad High Court did not condemn the criminal act of demolishing Babri Masjid which is a historic monument and a place of worship. A strong wave of frustration had developed throughout the country not only in the Muslim community but also the society at large following the verdict. The Allahabad High Court verdict is more apprehensive than disappointment. Let me appreciate my brothers of India for demonstrating a matured reaction and setting a classical example of patience, which could have not been witnessed if the judgement would have been otherwise. If half of security forces which guarded UP on the day of verdict would have been present on the day of demolition it must not have happened. And had the masjid been alive on the day of verdict, would the verdict be the same?
Regarding the demolition of Babri Masjid the Supreme Court in its judgment of 1994 said: “Within a short time, the entire structure was demolished and razed to the ground. Indeed, it was an act of ‘national shame.’ What was demolished was not merely an ancient structure, but the faith of the minorities in the sense of justice and fair play of the majority. It shook their faith in the rule of law and constitutional processes.” This time it was the Allahabad High Court that shook the minority community’s faith in the rule of law and constitutional processes. The verdict has literally put the whole Judicial System of Secular India at stake. If not invalidated by the Supreme Court, this judgment will turn India’s legal position from a Secular Democracy to a Ram-Mythology based Theocracy. Incredible Justice for Incredible India!
LAHORE GURDWARA VERDICT OF 1940
Gurdwara Shahid Ganj is a holy place for both Muslims and Sikhs in Lahore (Pakistan). The Gurdwara was built in the 18th century after demolishing a mosque. The Sikhs believed that Bhai Taru Singh with some 3000 captives was killed at this place and so it is named as ‘Shahid Ganj’ and so it is a sacred place for them. Instead of demolishing the structure, Muslims filed a case in 1850 for reversion of the mosque. On Jan 26, 1938 the case was dismissed from the High Court and thereafter the Muslims further appealed to the judicial committee of the Privy Council. On 2nd of May 1940 the final verdict was delivered dismissing the claim of Muslims. Since the structure was very old the damages caused to the Gurdwara was recently renovated by the Pakistan government.
The above mentioned judgment is very important as far as the Babri Masjid title suit is concerned. Pre-Independence Privy Council judgments are very often cited by lawyers in Indian courts to strengthen their arguments. The verdict was with reference to the doctrine of adverse possession. A rightful owner of a property can lose his title over a property if another person occupies it for a particular period without being challenged. This is an important legal provision in solving property disputes. As per this provision, the title suit of Babri Masjid land goes wholly to the Muslims. Unfortunately, the Lucknow Bench of Allahabad High Court at the final moment lost all guts to bring the dispute to a logical end.
The Allahabad High Court verdict is not the end of judicial process and surely both sides will appeal to the Supreme Court soon. A positive attitude is expected from the highest court. The frustration on the issue of verdict however must not create disappointment and hopelessness in the Muslim youth of this country. Patience is what Islam teaches us on this occasion. The Holy Qur’ān reminds us of a situation faced by Prophet Musa (PBUH): Musa said to his people: Ask help from Allah and be patient; surely the land is Allah’s. He causes such of His servants to inherit it as He pleases, and the end is for those who guard (7:128). And Allah teaches in His holy book: And they planned and Allah (also) planned, and Allah is the best of planners (3:53). Resistance by peaceful and democratic means is the only way forward. Keeping the political, legal and historic analyses of the verdict in view, this is also a time to discuss the Hindu concepts of God, deity and idols. This is a good opportunity to trigger such basic and fundamental discussions in the society and educational campuses.