Ayodhya dispute: claims and counter-claims

September 29th, 2010 - 6:29 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Sep 29 (IANS) The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court will Thursday give its verdict on the Ayodhya land row. Here are the claims and counter-claims of the contestants in the Babri Masjid-Ramjanmabhoomi dispute:

Birthplace of Hindu god Ram:

- Hindu litigants say the disputed site in Ayodhya is the birthplace of Ram.

- Muslim litigants argue there is no historical, archaeological or religious proof for this. They say even Hindu religious bodies and ‘akharas’ in Ayodhya are not unanimous on this issue.

Ram temple:

- Several Hindu organisations claim a Ram temple was built at the site in 10th-11th century A.D. This was destroyed to raise the Babri mosque in the 16th century.

- Muslim groups say there is no historic evidence to back this. According to them, Turkish sultans found a mound at Ram Kot in Ayodhya in 1194.

Temple or mosque:

- Hindu groups claim the Ram temple was razed by Mir Baqi, a general of Mughal emperor Babar, to build a mosque in 1528.

- Muslim groups say there is no evidence to back this assertion.

Archaeological evidence:

- The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), which carried out excavations, said in a 574-page report that there were distinctive features associated with a 10th centrury north Indian temple beneath the Babri mosque site.

- Muslim groups and the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Waqf Board challange the ASI findings. They say the ASI ignored the discovery of glazed tiles and pottery, besides two graves, which proved that Muslim settlements existed there even before Babar’s time.

Possession rights:

- Muslim groups claim they have held the title of the land at the site for centuries. They say that regular prayers were offered at the mosque till Dec 22, 1949.

- Hindus argue that Muslims got possession of the site during Babar’s time.

Legal limitation:

- Hindus argue that the Rule of Limitation applies to the suit filed in 1961 by Muslim litigants and organisations. Muslims protected their title though adverse possession.

- Muslim groups argue that they have the legal title. One cannot go back to several centuries ago on the argument of adverse possession.

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