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Gyanvapi order suggests 'rot' that infests Indian judiciary, to 'facilitate' Hindu right

By Our Representative 

The Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC), claiming to the largest advocacy organization of Indian Muslims in the United States with chapters across the nation, strongly condemning the order of an Indian court to seal part of the historic Gyanvapi mosque in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, has said that the order “puts spotlight on the rot that infests the Indian judiciary, which is actively facilitating the Hindu rightwing’s project of converting India into a Hindu Rashtra. 
In a statement, IAMC said, on Monday, a lawyer commissioner Ajay Kumar Mishra, who was directed to survey the mosque — after a group of Hindu women filed a petition seeking permission to pray on the premises — submitted before the court that a Shiva Linga (an idol depicting the Hindu deity Shiva) was found in “wazu khana” (ablution tank) of the mosque.
It added, the lawyers representing the Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee, which manages the Gyanvapi mosque, rejected the claim saying that the object is not a “shivling” but part of a fountain.
“In haste, the local court ordered the authorities to immediately seal a portion of the mosque, literally giving legal cover to the Hindu supremacist drives of BJP, RSS and its militant affiliates”, the statement said, adding, “These Hindu extremist groups have long been targeting and trying to ignite a dispute by manipulating history and falsely claiming that Mughals destroyed a temple to build not only the Gyanvapi mosque but countless other mosques around the country.”
According to IAMC, based in Washington DC, apart from its explicit communal overtones, the latest court order “completely violates the 1991 Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, which prohibits conversion of places of worship from one religion to another, except for the Babri Masjid dispute.”
Helping Hindu extremist groups' majoritarian agenda, the grave injustice by the court is yet another assault on India’s 200 million Muslim
Recalling the Babri Masjid demolished in 1992 by a “Hindu extremist mob who claimed — without evidence — that the Mughal-era mosque had been constructed on land holy to Hindus”, IAMC said, “Shockingly, India’s Supreme Court awarded that land to the Hindus even while acknowledging that no evidence existed that the mosque had been built by demolishing a temple and also ruling that its demolition was a criminal act.”
“Indian Americans are extremely alarmed by the latest court order, which could potentially pave the way for the replay of Babri Masjid. By playing into the hands of Hindu extremist groups and furthering their majoritarian agenda, this grave injustice by the court is yet another assault on India’s 200 million Muslims,” said Rasheed Ahmed, Executive Director of IAMC.
“It also puts spotlight on the rot that infests the Indian judiciary, which is actively facilitating the Hindu rightwing’s project of converting India into a Hindu Rashtra (Hindu nation),” Ahmed asserted.
“Gyanvapi mosque has long been on the hit list of the Hindu rightwing, especially after the favorable judgment given by the Supreme Court in the Babri Masjid case in 2019. In all possibilities, the latest development could be used to whip up the communal sentiments and further the genocidal campaign against the Muslims of India,” added Syed Ali, President of IAMC.

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