AIMPLB to challenge verdict

Ayodhya judgment based on faith rather than facts: Board

The decision, taken at an AIMPLB Working Committee meeting held here on Saturday, was opposed by several members but the majority view, which favoured moving the Supreme Court, ultimately prevailed.

“The land of the mosque could neither be shifted nor gifted. There is no such provision in the Sharia (Islamic law). The land of the mosque will belong to the mosque even if the mosque has been demolished,” Board member S Q R Iliyasi told reporters after the meeting.

Senior Board member Zafaryab Jilani said that an appeal in the apex court would be filed in about a month’s time. “There are many contradictions in the high court verdict,” Abdul Rahim Quereshi, joint general secretary of the Board, said. The Board’s legal cell convener Y H Muchhala added that it had become necessary to approach the apex court to rectify the deficiencies in the Allahabad High Court judgment.

The Board has, however, kept its doors open for negotiations and said that it would consider any proposal to resolve the matter amicably if it was in accordance with the tenets of Islam and the Sharia.

Referring to the efforts being made by the oldest Ayodhya litigant Mohammad Hashim Ansari, it made it clear that Ansari’s efforts did not have the Board’s backing nor support. Although the Board members claimed that the decision was unanimous, according to sources, several members proposed that the issue be resolved amicably and that there was no need to move the Supreme Court.

Board vice-president and renowned Shia cleric Maulana Kalbe Saadiq, senior member Mahmood Madani and many other members stressed the need for conciliation and urged the Board to keep the doors open for an out-of-court settlement. “Will the Muslims be able to construct a mosque at the disputed site even if the Supreme Court gives a ruling in their favour?” a senior member asked during the meeting.

Akhara to move SC

Meanwhile, the Nirmohi Akhara, one of the main Hindu plaintiffs, has also made it clear that it will approach the apex court to challenge the September 30 verdict. “We want the possession of the entire disputed land and not a part thereof,” Akhara chief Mahant Bhaskar Das said on Saturday.

An undeterred Ansari, however, said that he would continue his efforts to resolve the issue amicably despite the Board’s decision to go to the apex court. He also met the All India Akhara Parishad chief Mahant Gyan Das to discuss the matter.

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