Court ruling soon, Ayodhya may again come at centrestage

With a key judicial verdict on the original Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi title suit expected soon, the Ayodhya issue could again become a hot political issue.

New Delhi: With a key judicial verdict on the original Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi title suit expected soon, the Ayodhya issue could again become a hot political issue.

Political parties, including the Congress and the BJP, are keeping their fingers crossed on its possible fallout, an issue that has even engaged the attention of Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh.

A special bench of the Allahabad High Court recently concluded the hearing related to ownership of a disputed land in Ayodhya to which Hindus and Muslims have made rival claims for over a century.

The Congress Core Group headed by Sonia Gandhi recently deliberated on the issue. Party leader Abishek Singhvi, however, declined to hazard any guess as to how
things would play out.

"It is not only foolish but indeed irresponsible to speak on any judgement before delivery and especially on so sensitive an issue like Ayodhya," he said.

"We as a responsible political party and responsible citizen should not allow surcharged atmosphere and potential divisiveness even before the judgement is delivered," he said.

Like all parties, BJP, which brought the Ayodhya issue to the centrestage of national politics sometime back, is also waiting for the verdict.

"As far as we are concerned, we believe that the matter of faith that Ram was born there, is not a BJP or RSS perception, but a perception across India and across all sections of society.

"Everyone would definitely like to see how court interprets this, the BJP has always said that the nation has to solve sensitive issues by taking everyone on board. Let us
wait for the court verdict," BJP leader Prakash Javadekar said.

However, another BJP leader Vinay Katiyar, a known Hindutva hardliner, said sensitive issues regarding faith and belief cannot be resolved in court and suggested that the government should make a law or build consensus on it.

"A mosque never existed there (in Ayodhya). This is a futile debate. This country and followers of Ram will never accept it (a court verdict that there was mosque)," he said.

"Lord Ram was worshipped there, is worshipped there and will be worshipped there. Nobody can remove Ram from Ayodhya," Katiyar said.

The All India Babri Masjid Action Committee (AIBMAC) also appealed to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to explore ways to find out an out-of-court settlement.

"Make another effort by yourself and through any representative of the central government to bring together LK Advani (senior BJP leader) and other national leaders to find out an out-of-court settlement of the matter even before the court verdict is spelt," AIBMAC chairman Javed Habeeb said in a letter to the Prime Minister.

Issuing an appeal, Habeeb said, "May Allah give courage and wisdom to the politicians of the Indian nation and Hindu-Muslim leadership to listen and act on these suggestions both in letter and spirit to have a mosque rebuilt and a Ram Mandir built at Ayodhya to the best interest of both Hindus and Muslims."

The Mayawati government in Uttar Pradesh has sought additional security forces to tackle any possible law and order problem after the verdict.

The Prime Minister last week discussed the issue with senior colleagues on how to deal with the situation in the aftermath of the judgement.

The Congress Core Group also met on Friday and is reportedly apprehensive about the fallout.

Reports had it that the Group headed by Gandhi took stock of all scenarios that may follow the crucial judgement.


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