This word keeps amusing people. I somehow am more amused than most of you. No, I did not demolish the mosque. Neither do I have any interest in seeing a mosque being rebuilt, nor am I going to pray if a temple is built there. The reason is, the place is very close to where my parents come from. My father's village is around 25 kms and my mother comes from a place around 30 kms from ayodhya. No wonder, I have grown up listening a lot of stuff related to the place, the issue etc.

The so much hyped (obviously by the media) verdict came on the 30th of September and to be very honest I couldn't have been more satisfied with what I saw. The verdict, for me was spot on. The reaction was also pretty good. Though there was a reason to it, which I did not find a mention of, anywhere. One of the biggest reasons why all the political parties were so much restrained about what they were saying is probably the media itself. Had it been 1992, the electronic media almost non-existent, things might have been very different. That, India has ‘moved on’ , has become ‘more mature’, might sound very good, but can be debated at length to be sure before being proud of. As an example, one of the channels showed one of their reporters asking some random 'dudes' and 'dudettes' on some city streets about the whereabouts of Ayodhya. Most of them didn't know where it was! If this is called having moved on, I personally, can only laugh about it. Not knowing something which has dictated the politics of your country for almost 2 decades is nothing to be proud of (my views, you may differ). Closing your eyes to an issue is not "having moved on", in my dictionary, at-least.

I am a very big fan of the thought that ”we” don’t represent India. How can a person sitting at his home watching an English news channel represent India? How can a person reading a blog on his/her laptop represent India? If he/she thinks so, I am sure he has no idea about what India is. I say this because I hear diametrically opposite views when I talk about this issue to people in my office or my circle and when I do the same with my relatives living in villages. So, what I believe is that acknowledging the fact that a certain belief exists(whether right or wrong) is very important. It’s very similar to dismissing an organization completely as if no one believes in it. I am sure if you know everything about RSS from what media has shown you, you will not agree that it has more than 5 million members and what all activities it undertakes.

Getting back to the point, the verdict, in my view was a very balanced one. Such issues can only be solved in a way where everyone gets something and compromise on some other things. It’s a debate which has no end, unless you are not India. No one can be absolutely right or wrong in these issues.

When I see the views and personally think over it, here is what I find.

For the Hindus: A place believed to be the birthplace of lord Ram by Hindus, has to be taken a proof enough that it is in fact a holy place for them. That he was born there or not is irrelevant. No fact associated with faith can be proved in a court of law. If that starts happening the secular nature of the law is itself questioned. So if that is true and with the other beliefs such as that of a prior temple at the same place, Hindus do have a point there.

For the Muslims: A mosque was there, which was brought down in 1992 in an act which the law holds as criminal. Whether the mosque was built over a temple or not 500 years back is again a point which is not very important. Islam is no more than 1000 years old in India (at least in a significant number). A religion which itself is not more that 1000 years old can not be expected to have religious symbols dating prior to that. And as a matter of fact, most of the Islamic history has been full of religious violence and conversions, demolishing a temple to build a mosque would not have been a very rare thing then. So, if we get into questioning the legitimacy of those structures now, it would almost be questioning the faith itself, which once again I find to be against the secular part of our constitution.

Basically the point is, everyone has a valid point, and getting clear winners out of it is only next to impossible. Justice Khan quotes from a prior Supreme Court verdict:

'As far as a title suit of civil nature is concerned, there is no room for historical facts and claims. Reliance on borderline historical facts will lead to erroneous conclusions.'

I guess this is the best possible solution we could have had and the parties interested should now actually “move on” as the media says.


deka said…
nice one ankit.. though i feel that supposed good verdict was probably one of the original ideas which people would have thought about in the first place itself ,ie., divide the land and carry on . The reaction of India was also more like "we dont care any more". Bigger issues like kashmir exist. The only thing saddening is that the guys who lead in the demolition and in asignificant way altering what India meant as a secular state have been let off my the other report ( I cant pronounce it .. Liberhaun or something)....
pagalkutta said…
nice one.. debatable though.. and agree with deka..
Siddhant said…
Sahi likha hai. Divide and (let others) rule.

I fully agree with you on your point of our increased ambivalence towards national issues. India believes she has moved on only when a news channel shows 4 panelists, with obsolete careers, rabble about how 'they believe' India has moved on.

Such heavy reliance on the media reports to pass any judgement is a pity. But that's a power that the media will not yield and will continue to exploit.
Ankit said…
agree!! :)....can debate it myself and counter ague with different things....just one of the many thoughts which comes to mind!!
Ankit said…
@siddhant,...i guess u got the exact point I was trying to make :)
Gaurav said…
can see many points u r trying to make here, were discssd smtm long back in clg 2 :)....n really some facts (of urs) were really logical n insightful.... Good one!
Gaurav said…
can see many points u r trying to make here, were discssd smtm long back in clg 2 :)....n really some facts (of urs) were really logical n insightful.... Good one!
Rishubh said…
agree with you man
all these issues like ayodhya,kashmir they are like mines hidden which can explode any time

If you see the whole verdict , the delays, the way the verdict was announced it was all dealt in a very responsible way without creating any chaos.

Media and kewl secular indians might argue that 'wondering if democracy means majority rule,
'Force of faith trumps law and reason in Ayodhya case'
but thats all just creating more rifts

Its very bad how the media project these issues
specially after the verdict they were capturing the faces and expression of every BJP or RSS leader they could get their hands on, in Time Now which started 'INDIA FIRST', their anchor Arnab Ghose was continuously trying to instigate the BJP leader to say something offensive on the Live Tv, and he also made a comment thats RSS chief
seems to very happy,

These media people are pseudo seculars, multi faced, hypocrites

Yesterday I was reading about issues related to Kashmir and I came across this article , how the media ignores the plight of Kashmiri pundit--
Roshan said…
Ya these media, always try to make controversy and make money out of it. IT was well shown in Peepli Live. On the other day of verdict i.e. 1st October, I was shocked to see the headline of a National Daily, saying "2 Parts to Hindu and 1 part to Muslim." I know it's the truth but saying the truth is not only important, saying the truth in right way which doesn't offend anyone is the right thing.
Siddharth said…
Great post! I agree, the Indian media can be imbecile at many times, but I don't have a proper historical perspective on the media to say whether it is becoming better or worse by the day.

By the way, the only thing I'll perhaps contest is about RSS. I know it does a million great things from charity to relief work to everything else you might think of. So does Jamaat ul Dawa in Pakistan. The fact that it has/had supported some very bad things cannot be overlooked through the good it does, at least by law. That's just my view!
Ankit said…
@ Siddharth, I agree what u said abt RSS,, my only point is, do people know about it? To form an opinion about anything its always good to know whats true (both sides) and not just one!!
Navdeep Jakhar said…
Your blog is one of the first ones I have read that carries a balanced viewpoint without the shrill argument of "Do we really care what happens in Ayodhya".
As you rightly mentioned, gross illiteracy about an issue does not imply that we have moved on, it simply shows the people on screen are least bothered about a problem that has raged on for 2 decades.
As people say that this could have been the original "simple" solution, I would just like to point out that sometimes the timing is all that matters. Do any of us believe that such a compromise could have been accepted if it was ten years early and both sides were perhaps still not short on rhetoric and chest beating.
Perhaps it was necessary to prolong the case, letting the tempers cool down before delivering the obvious.
_Akshay D said…
hey good one nicely written :)
still having baker circle in office? :)
The verdict was so good that the dry day was cancelled :D
Ankit said…
na yaar...gone are those days :(...its a very lonely place now :(
Ankur Srivastav said…
nice 1. i totally agree wid ya.
Kalicharan7D said…
..So when would the time come when we started questioning Faith itself?
Since the real solution is not one wherein a compromise is struck between the warring parties; it is, if i may be figurative, shielding from damage a soft little flower, grown in the grass, right there in the battlefield.
But, to be true, even Western nations & US feel too bogged down to freely discuss matters of Faith.
And this is exactly where India (read Indian Muslims) was supposed to fill in.. I personally believe, Indian Muslims (with their sufi heritage) are far superior to, say, the Arabs.
So plz correct me Ankit if i am wrong, if it is not true that more than the opinion of media, politicians, even me or u, more important is to know & engage with the feelings of an average Indian Muslim?
Ankit said…
i agree with what u feel, but practically there is no "average muslim". There can be an an average opinion of Muslims but then it won't be liked by many others. So, whether right or wrong you have to keep in mind many things before you decide on something.

I fully support what you say about not confusing with Muslim opinion to what the politicians or the media says, but as you know an average person's opinions are influenced by what they say and they (media and politicians)are influenced by what think might influence the people.
Kalicharan7D said…
Vicious circle. Hmmm.
Anon said…
For once, I agree completely with the points put forward on this issue!
harsh said…
wowwwww nice blog
Neha Dixit said…
I am glad that people like you are bothering to break the cocoons of passivity and write about it. The deal is that we have to keep raising an alarm instead of being indifferent and sitting at home with a 'who cares' attitude.

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