Sahmat Statement on Ayodhya Verdict

Thanks Sohail Akbar in New Delhi for sending this.

From: SAHMAT – Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust
29, Feroze Shah Road,New Delhi-110001
Telephone- 23381276/ 23070787
Date 1.10.2010

Statement on Ayodhya Verdict

The judgement delivered by the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid Dispute on 30 September 2010 has raised serious concerns because of the way history, reason and secular values have been treated in it. First of all, the view that the Babri Masjid was built at the site of a Hindu temple, which has been maintained by two of the three judges, takes no account of all the evidence contrary to this fact turned up by the Archaeological Survey of India’s own excavations: the presence of animal bones throughout as well as of the use of ‘surkhi’ and lime mortar (all characteristic of Muslim presence) rule out the possibility of a Hindu temple having been there beneath the mosque.
The ASI’s controversial Report which claimed otherwise on the basis of ‘pillar bases’ was manifestly fraudulent in its assertions since no pillars were found, and the alleged existence of ‘pillar bases’ has been debated by archaeologists. It is now imperative that the site notebooks, artefacts and other material evidence relating to the ASI’s excavation be made available for scrutiny by scholars, historians and archaeologists.

No proof has been offered even of the fact that a Hindu belief in Lord Rama’s birth-site being the same as the site of the mosque had at all existed before very recent times, let alone since ‘time immemorial’. Not only is the judgement wrong in accepting the antiquity of this belief, but it is gravely disturbing that such acceptance should then be converted into an argument for deciding property entitlement. This seems to be against all principles of law and equity.

The most objectionable part of the judgement is the legitimation it provides to violence and muscle-power. While it recognizes the forcible break-in of 1949 which led to placing the idols under the mosque-dome, it now recognizes, without any rational basis, that the transfer put the idols in their rightful place. Even more astonishingly, it accepts the destruction of the mosque in 1992 (in defiance, let it be remembered, of the Supreme Court’s own orders) as an act whose consequences are to be accepted, by transferring the main parts of the mosque to those clamouring for a temple to be built.

For all these reasons we cannot but see the judgement as yet another blow to the secular fabric of our country and the repute of our judiciary. Whatever happens next in the case cannot, unfortunately, make good what the country has lost.

Romila Thapar
K.M. Shrimali
D.N. Jha
K.N. Panikkar
Amiya Kumar Bagchi
Iqtidar Alam Khan
Shireen Moosvi
Jaya Menon
Irfan Habib
Suvira Jaiswal
Kesavan Veluthat
D. Mandal
Ramakrishna Chatterjee
Aniruddha Ray
Arun Bandopadhyaya
A. Murali
V. Ramakrishna
Arjun Dev
R.C. Thakran
H.C. Satyarthi
Amar Farooqui
B.P. Sahu
Biswamoy Pati
Lata Singh
Utsa Patnaik
Zoya Hasan
Prabhat Patnaik
C.P. Chandrasekhar
Jayati Ghosh
Archana Prasad
Shakti Kak
V.M. Jha
Prabhat Shukla
Indira Arjun Dev
Mahendra Pratap Singh
Ram Rahman
M.K. Raina
Sohail Hashmi
Parthiv Shah
Madan Gopal Singh
Madhu Prasad
Vivan Sundaram
Geeta Kapur
Rajendra Prasad
Anil Chandra
Rahul Verma
Indira Chandrasekhar
Sukumar Muralidharan
Supriya Verma
N.K. Sharma
S.Z.H. Jafri
Farhat Hasan
Shalini Jain
Santosh Rai
Najaf Haider
R. Gopinath
R.P. Bahuguna
G.P. Sharma
Sitaram Roy
O.P. Jaiswal
K.K. Sharma

14 Responses

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by beena sarwar, beena sarwar. beena sarwar said: SAHMAT statement #Ayodhya, signed by prominent historians, intellectuals iincl #RomilaThapar #IrfanHabib […]


  2. For the sake of civil society to progress,justice should prevail,and it should show with out any doubt.


  3. excellent -in fact the verdict is so absurd the muslims should give the land as charity to the terrorists who demolished the mosque and jai ho


    • Thanks. We will accept the site even as charity. Anyhow centuries of muslim rule has reduced Hindus to beggars. But for the British, we would even today been under muslim charity only. It was the British who taught us what democracy is, by introducing elections. Did any muslim ruler do anything like that in India? Anyhow there are no elections in most muslim countries, not as a democracy anyway. And who are the terrorists? The whole world knows that not all muslims are terrorists, but strangely most terrorists are muslims. Agree?


  4. This was no judgement, that is indisputable. But it is not even a compromise formula which it is being claimed as by the “great” politicians.


  5. Muslim is known to destroy other people religion site. In Turkey with evidence church was turned into mosque. Hagia Sophia was a church and the it was turned to a Mosque by cruel Muslim sultans. So I hope Indians not to be stupid and trust these Muslim words such as secular values as in Islam the only values they respect is Arab values. Can we build a church or temple near their holy site, of course NO. So let we the other faiths of the world show no respect to this religion


  6. […] This cup of tea was served by: Journeys to democracy […]


  7. It was not a judgement, it was a mockery of Indian Law. Just read statements of RSS and BJP leaders after this judgement. Indian Muslims hurt by this verdict.


  8. Mosque is claimed to be a ‘God’s House’ by
    the Mullah, when God is present every where
    and is owner of all there is in the earth and the
    heavens, whether it is with Hindus or Muslims
    . As for prayer Allah has declared
    the entire face of earth as masjid. Why then
    fight about a mosque belonging to Babar.


  9. The entire trial was a farce intended to distract from the crime: the destruction of a protected monument. Whether it was a mosque or a temple is irrelevant. It was vandalized with political sanction. All protected monuments are the nation’s heritage, and the Govt of India should have prosecuted the criminals on the charge of destruction of national property. I urge the historians and archeologists who have signed the statement above to examine and pursue this legal angle. It will at least restore a measure of sanity to this surreal scenario of Lalla Ram and Sita’s Rasoi. Isn’t it high time we engaged with reality and not myth?


  10. The structure that is today known as the “Qutub Minar” was actually built by the Emperor Chandragupta Vikramaditya… the greatest Emperor of all times. His empire stretched from Bali to Turkmenistan… and Bacteria.

    However… today it is known as “Qutub Minar” after Qutubuddin Aibak.

    Need I say more…


  11. Sorry typo. I meant… Bactria or Bactriana


  12. To, The Editor,

    Amicable Solution for Ayodhya Conflict Press Note — For Favour of Publication
    Several reputed historians, social activists and legal luminaries have expressed the view that the recent Ayodhya Verdict is unscientific, illogical and against the history. However, a large section of people, both Hindus and Muslims, feel that judgment is one which could best be given in the current scenario and is a possible roadmap. Judges have taken the lead in giving what appears a practical and humane approach, respecting all views. By dividing the land in three parts they have tried to unite the society. A grand Temple on 2/3rd part of the disputed land and an imposing Mosque on 1/3rd part of it is a real good solution without proclaiming oneself as winner and the other as loser. The idea to let the temple and mosque co-exist side by side has been on the table for decades but, unfortunately, the idea could not take the practical shape because of rigid stand by the contesting parties. It is high time that all parties now show the magnanimity and flexibility in their approach and agree to co-exist with Temple and Mosque. After the amicable solution of Ayodhya Issue, contesting parties should reiterate that henceforth no such issues would be raised by either party.
    We the Muslim citizens of Lucknow appeal to all concerned to focus on the more pressing issues affecting the community like literacy and poverty and agree for the amicable solution suggested by the Hon. Judges for Ayodhya Issue. All Indians, irrespective of their creed, should bear in mind that along their religion, integrity of the country and harmony in the society is essential for peaceful and respectable life.
    We appreciate the stand taken by senior leaders of all the parties of the country on this issue of national importance and also role played by Central and State Government as well as the Print & Electronic Media for bringing about peace, tranquility and for the maintenance of law & order in the country.
    It must be made very clear that any amicable settlement does not allow those responsible for Babri Mosque demolition going scot free. Culprits for the crime should be brought to book at the earliest. We earnestly hope that henceforth, change of status of any place of worship will not be allowed in Secular India, on the basis of ethos or belief of any group of people.
    We the citizens of Lucknow
    1. Dr. Mansoor Hasan, Cardialogist, Former Prof., Medical University,
    2. Dr. Mahdi Hasan, FNA, Former Prof, J.N.Medical College, AMU,
    3. Dr. Mazhar Husain, Neuro-Surgeon, Former Prof, Medical University,
    4. Prof. Waseem Akhtar, Educationist, Vice Chancellor, Integral University,
    5. Idris Siddiqui, Engineer, Former Member, UP Electricity Board
    6. Dr. Jalil Kidwai, Scientist, Former Deputy Director, CDRI,
    7. Dr. Ishtiaq Rizvi, Dentist, Former Principal, Patel Dental College,
    8. S.M. Naseem, IPS (Retd), Former I.G. Police,
    9. Sahba Husain, Social Activist,
    10. Parveen Talha,Social IRS (Retd), Former Commissioner Excise
    11. Prof. Sharib Rudaulvi, Urdu Writer, Former Prof. JNU,
    12. Prof. Ahsan Rizvi, Scientist, Former Director Research, Faizabad Agriculture University
    13. Abid Suhail, Senior Journalist,
    14. Col. S.M.Husain, Educationist, Director, Unity College,
    15. Syed Ali Naqi, Engineer, Former Director, Design, Irrigation Deptt,
    16. Shafat Ali Sandelvi, Senior Journalist,
    17. Dr. Tausif Ahmed, Medicine, Director, Nishat Hospital,
    18. Dr. Sultan Shakir Hashmi, Journalist/Writer, President, Media Foundation,
    19. Dr. M.I.H. Farooqi, Scientist, Former Deputy Director, NBRI,

    Yours Faithfully,
    Dr. Mansoor Hasan, President, Sir Syed Scientific Society (Mobile: 9839066140)
    Dr. M.I.H. Farooqi, Secretary, Sir Syed Scientific Society (Mobile: 9839901066)
    Dr. Sultan Shakir Hashmi, Treasurer, Sir Syed Scientific Society (Mobile: 9236053169)


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