The All India Muslim Personal Law Board on Sunday decided to file a review petition against the Supreme Court’s verdict on the Ayodhya dispute, PTI reported. The board refused to accept the five-acre alternative plot in Ayodhya to be allotted to Muslims to build a mosque.
On November 9, the top court’s five-judge Constitution bench had said that a trust should be set up by the Centre within three months to oversee the construction of a Ram temple at the site in Ayodhya where the Babri Masjid stood till 1992. The Muslims, the court had said, should be given a five-acre plot elsewhere in Ayodhya for the construction of a new mosque as relief for the “unlawful destruction” of the Babri Masjid.
“The land of the mosque belongs to Allah and under Sharia law, it cannot be given to anybody,” said Zafaryab Jilani, the lawyer as well as the secretary for the Muslim group. “The board has also categorically refused to take five-acre land in Ayodhya in lieu of the mosque. The board is of the view that there cannot be any alternative to the mosque.”
The decision to file a review petition was taken at a meeting of the board on Sunday, which was attended by the law board’s executive members, legal experts and advocates of Muslim litigants in the Ayodhya case. All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen chief Asaduddin Owaisi was also present at the gathering.
Another Muslim body, the Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind, also decided to seek a review in the top court. The organisation’s chief, Arshad Madani, said the verdict was “not based on evidence and logic”, PTI reported. The group’s former Uttar Pradesh general secretary, M Siddiq, was one of the original petitioners in the case. The current state general secretary, Ashhad Rashidi, later became the petitioner.
“The top court in its judgement said that the mosque was not built by demolishing a temple, yet the mosque was not given to us,” Madani told News18. “So we will file a review petition and ask for what is rightfully ours.”
Jilani had earlier said the verdict “neither provided equity nor justice”. He had claimed that an initial reading of the top court’s ruling showed several contradictions and apparent errors.
A day after the Supreme Court verdict, the Sunni Central Waqf Board chairperson Zufar Farooqui had said the decision on whether to accept the five-acre land would be taken on November 26. He had then claimed that the board had no plans to challenge the judgement.
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