Protests in Delhi, Hyderabad mark 22nd Babri demolition anniversary
By Mumtaz Alam, IndiaTomorrow.net,
New Delhi, 06 Dec 2014: On the occasion of 22nd anniversary of Babri Masjid demolition today, protest demonstrations were held in different parts of the country including Delhi and Hyderabad, with hundreds of people vowing to continue a peaceful fight for the restoration of the mosque which was razed to the ground by a Hindu right wing mob on 6th Dec. 1992 in Ayodhya town of Uttar Pradesh. The title suit of Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi dispute is pending in the Supreme Court.
In New Delhi, 30 organizations, many among them non-Muslim, held a joint protest demonstration under the leadership of an NGO Lok Raj Sangathan. More than 500 people holding placards and banners took out thea march from Mandi House area and proceeded towards Jantar Mantar near Indian parliament where it turned into a public meeting.
The marchers were making slogans against the demolition of the mosque and demanding its reconstruction. Three years back, Allahabad High Court had ruled for trifurcation of the Masjid and its surrounding area. The verdict was challenged in the apex court where it has since been pending.
“Babri Masjid was historical monument of the country and we opposed its demolition. Political parties are dividing people in the name of religion and mosque,” said Birju Nayak of Lok Raj Sangathan while talking to IndiaTomorrow.net.
On why Lok Raj Sangathan had to come up to lead Muslim organizations on this issue, he said: “We have been holding protests every year as have Muslim organisations. We proposed for joint demonstration and they agreed.”
On this question, A Sayeed of Social Democratic Party of India, one of co-organizers, said: “It is not just a Muslim issue; it is related to democracy, constitution and secularism. There is nothing wrong if social and human rights organizations are raising this issue.”
School children demonstrating in New Delhi on 06 Dec 2014 on 22nd anniversary of Babri Masjid demolition.
Jamaat-e-Islami Hind was also among the organizers. Talking to IndiaTomorrow.net, Mohammad Ahmed, Secretary of the Jamaat said that Babri Masjid Action Committee was formed for this issue. “After years of demonstrations, they are of the view that mere demonstrations are not going to help us much and that’s why they have concentrated on the case in the court.”
“Wherever and whoever holds such protest Jamaat has been with them. We were with the Action Committee, and now when Lok Raj Sangathan came up with the idea of joint demonstration we are with them. We are also with the Action Committee as they are purusing the case in the court,” said Jamaat leader.
When asked about the solution of the decades-old dispute, Mr. Nayak said: “It is difficult for me to say anything on this. We know that idols were planted in the mosque and it was done as a conspiracy of British raj, which political parties have since been using for their political purposes. We cannot forget the truth.”
On solution of the case, human rights activist Kavita Krishnan who also took part in the demonstration, said: “Any resolution of the issue should accept the dignity of the Muslim community and the crime of demolition of the mosque.”
In Hyderabad, a shutdown, protests and meetings marked the 22nd anniversary of the demolition of the Babri Masjid, which passed off peacefully.
A shutdown was observed in parts of Hyderabad on a call given by some Muslim groups to demand reconstruction of the demolished mosque at its original site in Ayodhya.
Shops, business establishments and educational institutions were closed and vehicles were off the roads in the old city and other Muslim-majority areas as police stepped up security to prevent any untoward incident.
The usual hustle bustle around historic Charminar was missing while the roads in the centuries-old markets wore a deserted look. Shops downed the shutters in response to the shutdown call given by the Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM), Majlis Bachao Tehreek (MBT) and other groups.
Police arrested few youngsters, who tried to take out a rally defying the ban orders in Moghalpura near Charminar. The youth were raising slogans in support of their demand for reconstruction of the mosque.
Over 5,000 policemen and personnel from paramilitary forces were deployed in different parts of the city.
Special security measures were taken near historic Makkah Masjid. A tight vigil was maintained across the old city as the attempts to take out rallies by some organisations and also celebration of Vijay Diwas by some others led to violence in the past.