Babri mosque demolition was a planned event | By Dr Muhammad Khan

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Babri mosque demolition was a planned event

SECULARISM is a belief that religion should not be involved with the ordinary social and political activities of a country.

It demands separation of religious institutions from state institutions and a public sphere where faith and religion can be practised freely without harming each other and anyone.

Besides, the secularism calls for equality among the masses, irrespective of their religious beliefs, class, creed or social status.

It warrants protection of masses and their places of prayers and worship by the state and its institutions.

Unfortunately, India is a country which has been portraying itself as the champion of secularism.

But, practically it has totally violated the basics of secularism and democracy. The biggest example of being the Hindu authoritarian and non-secular state was demolition of Babri Mosque in 1992 and legalization of this act by Indian Supreme Court in November 2019.

Indeed, demolition of Babri Mosque was a well thought-out and planned event; undertaken by BJP and RSS people under the patronage and protection of Congress Government whose ratification was done by Indian Supreme Court.

Indeed, the final verdict of Indian Supreme Court on November 9, 2019 in the case of historical Babri Mosque had stunned almost all international jurists and the communities linked with international law.

Besides, the judgment also surprised the unbiased intellectual class in India who believed in fair play and impartiality of the Indian Supreme Court.

As per the verdict of Indian Supreme Court, 2.77 acres dedicated land of the Babri Mosque was allotted for the construction of Ram Janmabhoomi Temple.

The Supreme Court ordered Indian Government to allot 5 acres of land for the construction of Mosque (in lieu of the demolished Babri Masjid) in another place; indeed a shamed decision.

Sequel to this shamed verdict of Indian Supreme Court, international jurists view Indian highest judiciary as fake court which act upon the directives from Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS); which is all about Hindutva Ideology.

This verdict was a shameful act on the face of Indian Supreme Court, Indian Government and Indian State and society.

The global jurists criticized, condemned and looked-down this verdict and expected Indian superior court to reconsider its unjustified judgement.

Unfortunately, despite passage of three years, Indian Supreme Court did not reconcile its biased decision.

Rather, steps were initiated by Supreme Court and Indian Government to further consolidate this historical wrong.

It is worth mentioning that on December 6, 1992 Hindu fundamentalists from all over India belonging to various political, social and religious groups and organizations gathered at Ayodhya and attacked the historical Babri Mosque.

They demolished it under the protection of Indian security forces which were deputed by Indian Government.

As a result of clashes over the demolition of Mosque, more than 2,000 people (mostly Muslims) lost their lives.

This was an overt demonstration of Indian Hindu mentality besides religious and social biasness and above all hatred against minorities especially Muslims.

Kalyan Singh, then Chief Minister of the UP denied the charges of allowing the carnage to happen and rather emphasized for the immediate construction of the temple.

He said, “I have no regrets. The Ram temple has to come up, the structure (mosque) had to go.

” Narindra Modi (current Indian PM), L K Advani (former Home Minister) and top BJP leadership were part of this plot, which took place under the Government of Congress, the so-called secular face of India.

Analysing the Indian history, India has been a hard and fundamentalist Hindu state right from its inception in 1947.

It projected its secular character for the consumptions of the international community. Realistically, the so-called secular India is a land of extreme contradiction and intolerance.

Minorities and lower Indian castes are very vulnerable and open to exploitation by higher Indian castes without any remorse and state protection.

Infringement of human rights is a regular feature because of these lower classes and minorities.

In the garb of secularism and democracy, India has been exploiting the minorities throughout the post-colonial period.

Through a well-planned strategy, the areas inhabited by people other than Hindu majority were kept backward and deprived of basic facilities of life; economic deprivation, social alienation lack of educational basic health facilities.

Among Hindu even, the low class Dalit were discriminated alongside the minorities. Besides, Sikhs forming approximately 1.9% of Indian total population are being discriminated and relegated in all sphere of life in Hindu-dominated India.

In the post-1980s campaign, the Sikhs are looked down and considered as anti-state and anti-India.

Today, RSS is directly targeting the Sikh community in India. Sikh community leaders are showing grave resentment and anger over RSS wicked designs of Hindutva, aimed at establishing hegemony of Hindus over India.

Sikhs in India are under suppression. Christians forming almost 3% of Indian population are equally discriminated and humiliated in India.

They are also facing the fanatic onslaught of the RSS for conversion into Hinduism. Through a massive campaign against Muslims, the main minority group in India, forming over 17% of total population, Indian Muslims are discriminated, humiliated and forced to convert into Hinduism or else leave India.

The New York Times in its Opinion Page of August 17, 2017 wrote an article, entitled, “India’s Muslims and the Price of Partition”.

The prestigious newspaper mentioned salient features of the Indian policies towards Indian Muslims.

As per the contents of this article, the Modi’s India demand Muslims to “Reconvert to Hinduism”; a unanimous call from the Hindus, the BJP and its militant wing, the RSS in particular.

As per Pew Research Centre analysis 2018, out of 198 countries, India ranked as fourth worst in the world for religious intolerance.

International jurists and intellectuals have serious concerns against Indian religious-based violence against minorities.

Demolition of Babri Mosque in 1992 was widely condemned and protested. Indeed, Indian religiously motivated acts of violence and state-sponsored militancy is against; UN Charter and international law.

The world has witnessed the worst acts of brutalizing the minorities during the era of BJP Government under Prime Minister Modi (2014-2022.

Legalization of the belligerency of RSS, actions of Hindutva and rampant Hindu militancy against minorities is a dangerous trend which runs counter to humanity and established international norms.

— The writer is Professor of Politics and IR at International Islamic University, Islamabad.