Babri anniversary: Muslims, Hindus want to move on | india | Hindustan Times
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Babri anniversary: Muslims, Hindus want to move on

Hindus and Muslims in Ayodhya are increasingly shedding the baggage of December 6— the day Babri mosque was demolished.

india Updated: Dec 05, 2013 20:13 IST
Manish Chandra Pandey

Hindus and Muslims in Ayodhya are increasingly shedding the baggage of December 6— the day Babri mosque was demolished.



In 1992, hardline Hindu mobs, believing Lord Rama was born at the exact spot where the mosque stood, demolished the medieval structure, triggering a wave of bloody communal clashes in the country in which hundreds were killed.



Since then, while saffron outfits celebrate the day as shaurya diwas (bravery day), Muslims observe it as shok diwas (a day of mourning).



Last year, Ayodhya Muslims broke the trend of not holding marriages on this day, signaling many in the community wanted to move on.



On the 21st anniversary of the demolition this Friday, the feeling among both the communities is that the politicians on either side of the divide wanted the conflict to linger on.



The BJP has been consistently promising it will construct a grand Ram temple over the spot. But its PM candidate, Narendra Modi, has stayed clear of the temple issue so far in his election speeches, a significant development that has not gone unnoticed in Muslim homes here.



“It’s nice that Modi is focusing on development. All of us, Hindus and Muslims, want to move rather than be caught in the temple-mosque debate, which surely hasn’t taken us anywhere,” Shoaib Khan, 26 who runs a tent house told HT on phone.



Khan says he is actually busy in ensuring tent supplies for the Ram Vivah (Ram’s marriage) celebrations that would take place on December 7 this time.



“Muslims are in a minority in Ayodhya. But my business has only prospered, which proves there is no enmity between Hindus and Muslims. We have seen through the divisive politics of politicians who thrive on this,” says Khan.



Parmanand Pandey, 27, son of Sitaram Pandey, a priest at Rusi temple at Naya ghat, echoes Khan’s views.



“I am a teacher now. As a teacher, I preach unity. For our generation, temple or mosque was never an issue. It is education and employment which are the key issues,” he said.