LUCKNOW- At a press conference held on Sunday after a meeting in Lucknow, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board rejected the restitution award of five acres of land to the Sunni Central Waqf Board by the Supreme Court for construction of a mosque in Ayodhya. The AIPMLB has urged the Central Waqf Board to “give respect to this view of the community.”
The Supreme Court had, in its judgement on the Babri Masjid-Ram Janambhoomi title suit on November 9, directed the government to allot five acres of land to central Sunni Waqf Board out of an expanse of 67 acres, at a suitable and prominent location in Ayodhya for construction of a mosque. The court granted the ownership of the 2.77 acres of land where Babri Masjid stood till December 1992 in Ayodhya to the Hindus, paving the way for the construction of a Ram Temple there.
Speaking on behalf of the community at large, the AIMPLB said that the award of five acres of land to the Muslim community will neither balance equity nor repair the damage caused.” It added: “We decline to accept the said five acres of land,” the board said.
Referring to the earlier Supreme Court observations about the demolition of Babri Masjid being an act of ‘national shame’, the board said the restitution by granting five acres of land will not heal the wounds thus caused to the Muslim community.
The board has rejected the possibility of constructing a mosque at some other prominent place as directed in the judgement. ”Building the same mosque at some other place is not permissible as per Islamic law,” the board said.
The board also decided to file a review petition against the judgement in the Supreme Court.
“The land of the mosque belongs to Allah and under the Sharia, it cannot be given to anybody,” AIMPLB secretary Zafaryab Jilani told reporters after a meeting of the board here.
“The board has also categorically stated that it was against taking five-acre land in Ayodhya in lieu of the mosque. The board is of the view that there cannot be an alternative to the mosque,” he added.
The decisions were taken at the AIMPLB meeting held at Mumtaz College instead of the scheduled venue of Nadwatul Ulema, a senior member of the board was quoted by PTI as saying.
He said that on Saturday night it was told that the Lucknow district administration did not give permission to hold the meeting in Nadwatul Ulema since prohibitory orders under Section 144 of CrPC were in place. Hence the meeting took place at Mumtaz College, he said.