Some Muslims open to moving mosque
The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Some-Muslims-open-to-moving-mosque/articleshow/6669107.cms#ixzz11BmIEaUK
MUMBAI: A day after the Allahabad high court verdict on the Ayodhya title suit, a section of Muslims have started looking at the option of taking their mosque away from the Ram Janmabhoomi site. Some prominent clerics, peace activists and Islamic scholars feel that by not appealing in the Supreme Court and paving the way for Ram temple in Ayodhya, Muslims will earn a great deal of Hindu and secular Indians’ goodwill. Significantly, the option is not un-Islamic.
“The Sunni Waqf Board and All India Muslim Personal Law Board should show a gesture and vacate the land the court has allotted them. It should not be seen as surrender,” said Islamic scholar Zeenat Shaukat Ali. Ali added that there are precedents in Muslim history where Muslims had showed generosity and given up their places of worship once they found that these were built on places of worship of other religions.
She further said, “In the 8th century, the Ummayid caliph Ummavi Waleed surrendered the land of a mosque to Christians which his predecessors had grabbed. In Ayodhya, even if Muslims believe, and even if the court has vindicated their stand that the Babri mosque was not built on razed temple, they should be practical and build a mosque away from the temple site.”
The fear of Muslims is that once they give up their claim on the Ayodhya land, Hindutva organisations might raise the issues of Mathura and Kashi. Leading Islamic scholar Maulana Wahiduddin Khan said this fear was removed once the Places of Worship Act 1993 was brought which says that the status quo of all the place of worship, except Ram Janmabhoomi- Babri Masjid, will be maintained as on August 15, 1947. Moreover, the Maulana maintained, several mosques have been relocated in countries like Saudi Arabia and Egypt.
“It’s not in Quran and Hadith that once there’s a mosque, it’s always a mosque. It was later made part of Muslim belief by some fuqhas (Islamic jurists). Nobody is saying that Muslims should give up their claim on the mosque. They can relocate it,” said Khan.
Javed Anand of Muslims for Secular Democracy (MSD) argued that even if the SC endorsed the HC verdict and Muslims got their share in the disputed land, it was almost impossible that Muslims would ever be able to rebuild a mosque on the same site. “The best option is that they gift the land to the Hindus and set an example of magnanimity. It will open a new chapter of Hindu-Muslim unity,” said Anand.
Echoing this, Dongri-based businessman and president of Ekta Welfare Association Iqbal Memon Officer said a petition in the Supreme Court would only keep the issue boiling.