The landmark judgment of the Supreme Court on the Ram Janmabhoomi title dispute was hailed by all, except a few vested interest groups among the Muslim community. While the general Muslim community accepted the verdict wholeheartedly, the political class was evidently upset, as they found themselves jobless and without any motive in life. Moreover, there have been no instances of violence across the country post the verdict. This further proves how the general public has accepted the verdict maturely.
However, there is a fine line between acceptance and confusion. As of now, the Muslims, at least among the political and intellectual class, is very confused. Not only is their confusion in the air, but the political rivalry is also being witnessed, as the AIMPLB claims ownership over land it was never offered. The All India Muslim Personal Law Board has decided to file a review petition challenging the five-judge bench verdict of the Supreme Court in the matter. In the November 9th verdict, the Muslims were granted a five-acre land, to be allocated to them elsewhere. The AIMPLB has not only decided to file a review petition but has also rejected the five-acre land. However, it is worth noting that the AIMPLB was not a party in the title dispute, and as such, they will not be given the five-acre land. The land is most probably going to be allocated to the Sunni Waqf Board and the Jamiat-e-Ulema-e-Hind. Moreover, since the AIMPLB was not a party in the dispute, their review petition being accepted in the matter has next to negligible chances. Therefore, this seems to be nothing but political posturing and muscle-flexing by the AIMPLB, to somehow fool the Muslims into believing that they fought legally till the very end. Zafariyab Jilani stated that the land of the Babri Masjid belongs to Allah and can therefore not be given to anyone else, according to Sharia. Although the AIMPLB requested the Supreme Court to make them a party in the case, the Supreme Court refused to do so.
The Sunni Waqf Board meanwhile took a much more calculated and mature decision of not filing the review petition. They stated that although they were not ‘satisfied’ with the verdict, they were glad that the dispute saw closure at last.
Asaduddin Owaisi and his AIMIM indulged in cheap theatrics and melodrama. Owaisi too rejected the five-acre land given to the Muslims, referring to it as tokenism. He took a dig at the Supreme Court and said that “although the Supreme Court is supreme, it is not infallible”. In a fiery speech, he spelt out his legal logic, which we covered as well. The crowd was impressed indeed. However, we are guessing that it was an address to his party workers itself, therefore the zeal.
Although Twitter and other social media are democratic platforms for the public to voice their concerns, the Muslims desisted from initiating any silly campaigns post the verdict. One would have expected a severe online backlash against the judgement if the Muslims were not satisfied with the verdict, however, no such campaigns were observed. Many were seen welcoming the verdict and that the case would finally see closure.
Javed Akhtar had suggested that a charitable hospital be made at the five-acre land which was given to the Muslims. Similarly, Salim Khan, Salman Khan’s father advised the stakeholders to build a school at the site. This goes on to prove that unlike what the AIMPLB thinks, the Muslims do not necessarily want a mosque at the five-acre land. It due to these factors that we are seeing confusion among the Muslim community.
We must remember that all the Muslim stakeholders were claiming that whatever be the outcome of this judicial process, they would wholeheartedly accept the verdict. However, now that it is over a week since the verdict was announced, only the Sunni Waqf Board has accepted it. No other bodies are willing to stick to their words which they spoke before the verdict. If not hypocrisy, what else is this?