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Wednesday 3 June 2020

Muslim personal law board to ask for Ayodhya verdict review

Maulana Madani believes that the Muslim review petition would be dismissed and yet holds that it must be filed to exercise the right

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Announcing the filing of a review petition challenging the Supreme Court verdict in the Ayodhya case, the Muslim Personal Law Board said today that it did not approve of 5 acre of land to build a mosque in lieu of the land where the Babri structure once stood. The personal law board in Lucknow, while talking to the media after the meeting, questioned several points of the Supreme Court’s decision.

Following the meeting chaired by board president Maulana Rabe Hasan Nadvi, the board members said that there were many contradictions in the verdict of the apex court. They claim the following.

  1. In the presence of Zafaryab Jilani, a lawyer for the Muslim side in the apex court, board member SQR Ilyasi said that the Supreme Court has admitted that this mosque was built by Babar’s commander Mir Baqi.
  2. The three-domed building and the interior of the Babri Masjid from 1857 to 1949 are believed to be in the possession of Muslims. Then why in the judgment was the land given for a temple?
  3. The court has held that the last prayer in the Babri Masjid was read on 16 December 1949, that is, the structure was a mosque. Yet why was the claim of the temple on this accepted?
  4. The Supreme Court has held that on the night of 22-23 December 1949, the idols were placed inside the structure stealthily or forcibly. After this, these idols could not be considered deities because the Hindu ritual of pran pratishtha in murtis was not followed.
  5. No evidence was placed before the court that people worshipped Lord Rama under the dome. Then, why was the land given to Ram Lalla Virajman?
  6. The Supreme Court has said in its judgment that Ram Janmabhoomi cannot be considered a party. But the verdict was delivered on that basis.
  7. The Supreme Court has held that the demolition of the mosque on 6 December 1992 was wrong. Why was the decision given for the temple even after this?
  8. The court said in the judgment that Hindus had been worshipping there for hundreds of years, so the entire land is being given to Ram Lalla while Muslims have been offering prayers there, too, but they have been deprived of that spot.
  9. The land is given to Hindus and 5 acre of another plot is given to the other party. The Supreme Court ruled this by invoking Article 142 of the Constitution. The Waqf Act was not taken into consideration, according to which the land of a mosque can never be changed.
  10. On the basis of findings of the Archaeological Survey of India, the court held that the mosque was not built by breaking a temple. In that case, this decision of the court is incomprehensible and unreasonable.

Muslim Personal Law Board quotes Shari’ah

Maulana Wali Rahmani, general secretary of the Personal Law Board who was present at the meeting, questioned the verdict of the apex court citing the Shari’ah. Rahmani said, “Wherever a mosque is built, it remains a mosque. There is no scope for us to accept any other place for the mosque. It is totally against the demand of justice that the other party be given a place other than the disputed land.”

Meanwhile, after the AIMPLB meeting, Maulana Arshad Madni confirmed that the board has prepared the review petition against the verdict. Four Muslim litigants agreed to move the Supreme Court on Saturday.

Earlier, the pre-decided venue for the board meeting was changed. The meeting was attended by most of the members including board secretary Zafaryab Jilani and MP Asaduddin Owaisi. The Sunni Waqf Board did not participate in this meeting.

‘Our petition likely to be dismissed, but we’re going ahead’

After the meeting was over, Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind president Maulana Arshad Madani said while speaking to the media, “The verdict on Ayodhya is against us. Knowing the fact in advance that our review petition is 100% likely to be dismissed, we should file a review petition in the Supreme Court. This is our right.”

It is to be noted that the Supreme Court normally agrees to reviewing a verdict when it is not unanimous but the Ayodhya verdict is unanimous, with all the five judges arriving at one judgment.

Second, the apex court normally agrees to a review when an important piece of evidence or testimony by a vital witness was glaringly missed while reaching the conclusion of the case. The 10 issues that the Muslim side have raised above have all been addressed elaborately in the 1,045 pages of the verdict.

Validity of meeting disputed

The board meeting was held at Mumtaz PG College, Lucknow. All the board members including Maulana Mahmood Madani, Arshad Madani, Khalid Rashid Farangi Mahli, Zafaryab Jilani and Rabe Hassan Nadvi attended this meeting.

Asaduddin Owaisi, Hyderabad MP and president of All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, attended the meeting.

Earlier, there was some disagreement over the venue of the board meeting. The meeting was scheduled to be held at 10 AM on Sunday at Nadwa College, Lucknow. Members of the Personal Law Board gathered here but the venue was later changed.

Questions were raised about the meeting at Nadwa College. Mohsin Raza, a minister in the Yogi Adityanath government, termed the board meeting an attempt to spoil the atmosphere in Lucknow. Raza also questioned the board’s funding.

Desiring to file an appeal against the recent decision on the Ayodhya case, Muslim parties said on Saturday that Muslims should not take any land in exchange for Babri Masjid. On Friday, Iqbal Ansari, who was a party to the dispute, announced a boycott of the board meeting.

Some of the Muslim parties shared their disagreement with the meeting with AIMPLB general secretary Maulana Wali Rahmani in Nadwa.

On the other hand, Zafaryab Jilani said that Maulana Rahmani had summoned various Muslim parties related to the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid case before the important meeting of the board’s working committee in Nadwa on Sunday. He said that during the meeting, Mohammed Omar and Maulana Mahfujur Rahman, as well as other parties Haji Mahboob, Haji Asad and Hasbullah alias Badshah, had said that the verdict of the Supreme Court was beyond comprehension; hence, an appeal against it was needed.

Jilani claimed that the Muslim parties he spoke to had said that Muslims should not take any land in lieu of the land where the Babri Masjid stood.

The Supreme Court, while ruling in the Ramjanmabhoomi-Babri Masjid case on 9 November, had ordered the construction of a Ram temple at the disputed site and the Muslims to be given 5 acre of land at a prominent place in Ayodhya for the construction of a mosque.

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