December 6, 1992 was the most tragic day in the history of India that triggered widespread violence and massacre of Muslims as a result of demolition of “Babri Masjid.” It left a very negative impact on Hindu-Muslims relations. The magnitude of loss was so severe that the affects of the Muslims’ massacre has not faded away even after even after a period of 17 years. Quite surprisingly, few days back, the Liberhan Commission that was constituted to look into the Babri Mosque demolition gave its report a final shape and handed over to the Indian Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh. The commission, which was headed by retired Andhra Pradesh High Court Chief Justice M.S. Liberhan was able to present its report after 48 extensions spreading over a period of 17 years. The report is in four volumes with an extensive set of annexures which has been submitted to Indian Home Ministry for further processing before it is made public.
If we go into the background, “Babri Masjid,” the 16th century mosque was demolished by extremist Hindu groups that believed that said mosque was built on the birthplace of the Hindu god Ram. When the Babri Masjid tragic and unfortunate incident occurred, P.V. Narasimha Rao was Indian Prime Minister who belonged to Congress while Kalyan Singh, belonging to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. The Liberhan Commission, which was set up 10 days after the demolition of Babri Masjid on December 16, 1992 was mandated to investigate that what led to the demolition of said mosque. The commission was to submit its report by March 16, 1993 . Amongst those questioned by Liberhan were BJP senior leaders L.K.. Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Vinay Katiyar, Kalyan Singh, Bharatiya Janshakti (BJS) Chief Uma Bharati and others.
Though it will take some time that report is cleared from Indian Home Ministry and appears in public but it seems that the findings and recommendations of the report will not be able to do much to compensate Muslims who lost their lives during the demolition. Without having knowledge of the contents of the report, Hindus especially Hindutva elements have courageously accepted the charges of Muslims’ massacre but at the same time have refused to render any apology. In the same context, Bhartiya Janshakti Party’s President Uma Bharti has said that she is ready to own responsibility for the demolition of the disputed Babri Mosque at Ayodhya and has no problem even if she is hanged on the issue. While taking to reporters after the handing over of the report by Justice Liberhan to Indian Prime Minister, she said "like a good commander, I am ready to own the responsibility of the Babri Masjid's demolition and I have no problem even if I will be hanged on the issue." Reacting to the submission of the report on the demolition of the mosque she said, "The report which was submitted to the Prime Minister after 17 years of the constitution of the Commission is an attempt to appease Muslim community." She also appealed to the BJP leaders not to apologize for the demolition of Babri mosque as they themselves invited large number of people at Ayodhya for starting the 'Karseva'.
The issue of submission of Liberhan Commission report at this juncture is in fact more a tug of war between Congress and BJP to settle old scores rather than giving relief to the Muslims. The submission of the report is going to increase political tensions. The report's submission prompted the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to declare its commitment to building a Ram temple at the disputed site in Ayodhya. Muslims have raised their demand to make the report public while other parties including Communist Party of India (CPI) demanded tabling of the Liberhan Commission report in Parliament and action by Indian government on the basis of said report. It is a big question, would anyone dare take action against the leaders of BJP, Congress and Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) who guided and instigated the Hindu masses to demolish the Babri Masjid. It is on record that BJP’s L K Advani, Joshi and Katiyar, Vishwa VHP leader Ashok Singhal and Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh were all present at the time of the demolition of Babri Masjid who were rejoicing and shouting anti-Muslim slogans and phrases like “'Aik Dhakka Aur Do.” I don’t think that action would be taken against anyone, at least the one who are in the power in India today. Muslims in India are generally graded as low category citizens and are subjected to victimization by Hindu majority. There are numerous incidents like Barbri Masjid’s demolition which proves that the decision of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah for an independent homeland for Muslims was full of wisdom. By Afshain Afzal.
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