New Delhi: Sunni Waqf Board claimed in the Supreme Court on Friday that the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya was demolished by "Hindu Taliban" just like the Muslim Taliban had destroyed the Bamiyan Buddhas in Afghanistan. Senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for the legal heirs of original petitioner Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind's M Siddiqui, said, "Just as the Taliban militants have destroyed the Bamiyan, the Hindu Taliban destroyed the Babri Masjid."
"Islam says mosques are integral to faith. Hadith says this, but the Supreme Court says it was not integral to Islam," the senior lawyer said while adding that the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court referred to and relied upon this observation in deciding the civil suit. He also said that the Shia Waqf Board had no locus to speak in the case.
On the other hand, the Shia Waqf Board told the court that the custodian of the Babri mosque was Mir Baqi, a Shia, and the Sunni Waqf Board is not the representative of Muslims in India. The Shia Waqf Board also told the apex court that in order to maintain unity, peace and goodwill in the country, it is in the favour of giving one-third of the land for the construction of Ram temple.
It also opposed the proposal to refer Ismail Farooqi's judgment, that did not consider mosque an integral part of Islam, for reconsideration to the Consitution bench.
The special bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra has fixed July 20 as the next date of hearing on the Babri Masjid-Ram Janambhoomi case.
The apex court is hearing the 13 appeals filed against the 2010 judgment of the Allahabad High Court that mandated a three-way division of the disputed site in Ayodhya. It earlier dismissed all the 32 intervention petitions, including applications of filmmakers Shyam Benegal and Aparna Sen, and journalist Teesta Setalvad, in the case.
During an earlier hearing, a bench, comprising of CJI Misra, Justices Ashok Bhushan and Abdul Nazeer, had directed the registry not to entertain any intervention application in the Ayodhya case. The top court also rejected the intervention plea of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramanian Swamy in the matter.
On May 2, the Supreme Court even refused to give an urgent hearing to a mentioning by Swamy, seeking a direction to perform puja at the disputed site at Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh.