A Ram temple in Ayodhya is the most natural thing to happen. Trying to stop that can only accelerate hatred among communities.
On 6 December 1992, the hundreds of thousands of karsevaks assembled at the small town of Ayodhya decided to shape the fate of the Ram janmabhoomi by themselves. They tore down the erected barriers, threw away the resisting cadre of the organisations that had brought them there, and went to the three domes that shielded the infant Ram idols.
Soon, the three domes fell, and Indian history was changed forever.
There was outrage that the karsevaks had betrayed the apex court itself in their action. The Kalyan Singh government was sacked. The media and dominant sections of the academia went on hyperdrive against Hindus across India, reinforcing in the minds of ordinary Muslims that their right to exist in this land was being threatened by the forces of Hindutva.
But, unlike the manufactured outrage of the secularists, on 6 December 1992, the karsevaks had all the reasons to be angry. They had been let down by everyone, or so they thought. One should remember that the Ayodhya movement was perhaps the largest people’s movement in India, which has been rivaled only by the movements launched by the Mahatma during India’s independence struggle.
On 30 October and 2 November of 1990, the Mulayam Singh government, which personified all that was wrong with Nehruvian pseudo-secularism, had opened fire on unarmed karsevaks and had them massacred. Then, the unkindest of all cuts was made by the Supreme Court itself, when it assured in its 15 November 1991 order that the disposal in the Kalyan Singh government’s Land Acquisition Act would be given “sometime in December of this year”, i.e., 1991. However, even as one year passed, that did not happen. No wonder the karsevaks felt rage.
Historians, archaeologists, and epigraphists have repeatedly said that the Babri structure stood over a demolished temple. The leftist cabal in the academia and media had been bamboozling the Indian public in general and Muslims in particular with their lies and propaganda. Archeologist Dr K K Muhammad, in his interview with this author last December, pointed out the destructive role played by leftist historians in the Ayodhya controversy by way of suppressing facts. He explained:
“When excavation was undertaken at Ayodhya by Dr B B Lal, I was the only Muslim archaeologist in the team. At that time, these controversies were not there. When the controversy came up, the JNU historians suppressed some of our crucial discoveries. … the left historians and a section of the media played with facts, suppressing them and spreading the false notion that there was nothing under the Babri. Had they acknowledged the truth then, a lot of unpleasant events would not have happened. In fact, I know that many Muslim groups were willing to accept the truth, honour the sentiments of the fraternal Hindu community and work out a compromise. But the left historians and a section of the media thwarted it.”
Actually, given the scale of this human tragedy that unfolded because of false left-wing propaganda, it would not be wrong to ask for Nuremberg-like trials against those historians who used their position of power to thwart communal harmony between Hindus and Muslims.
There are, in fact, many mosques in Ayodhya. On the day of the demolition of the domes, there were more than a lakh karsevaks in that small town. Yet, it is on record that the karsevaks never touched any other mosque. This, in itself, should show that the so-called mobs were no “mobs” and that their fury was not mindless hate, as was made out to be. Had the systems of Indian state, namely, the polity, judiciary, academia, and media, acted with responsibility, the tragedies that unfolded after 6 December 1992 could have been avoided.
Ayodhya is associated with Ram in the Indian psyche from time immemorial. Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, and Sikhs – all venerate Ram. Throughout India, irrespective of linguistic barriers, Rama has been the theme of devotional literature and spiritual art forms, both in dance and music.
Perhaps the oldest mention of Ram, alluding to him as an avatar outside the Valmiki Ramayana, occurs curiously in Tamil Sangam literature. The story goes thus: A girl had fallen in love with a boy who had left for a place far away to earn money. Every evening, the girl stood at a particular place and looked at the pathway to her village, pining for her lover. This led to gossip among the villagers. They all talked behind her back. And then, the hero returned, and all the gossip ceased.
The poet explains how: “Just like those birds in the Banyan tree (near the Sethu) under which Ram was planning his strategy, disturbed by their sound, when with His voice, itself Vedic authority, commanded them to be silent, and the way they fell silent.” Similarly, the village gossip fell silent when the girl’s lover returned.
Note that nowhere the word Ramayana is used, and also that this is not in the time of Valmiki. This is a piece of poetry at least two thousand years old, and if an episode from Ram’s life associating him with divinity is being used in such a tangential manner, then imagine how much the Ramayana should have been a part and parcel of Tamil cultural life. India is a nation today because of such connections, of which Ram holds an important place.
To the south Indian pilgrim who visits the north, the Red Fort and the Taj Mahal do not appeal to her heart, but Ayodhya does. If there is a rock where Ram is said to have rested during his exile in the forest, then, irrespective of what language one speaks, all Indians feel an attachment to that rock. Even Valmiki and Kambar do not decide it for the Hindus. They were instruments of a greater force – the nation-building processes of India. For Indians, it is the spontaneous emergence of sacred geography from the memory of Shri Ram.
In the Ayodhya episode of modern Indian history, it is wrong to consider it as a fight between Hindus and Muslims. It is not. It is a fight between those deviant features of the Indian state that have strayed from the spirit of the Indian nation, and the nation-building forces. When the Congress and the ruling Nehruvian elite progressively deviated from the spirit of India, they created a volatile situation for the country. If anyone wants to see what the Nehruvian Indian state can achieve without an iota of connect with the Indian nation, one just needs to see what they have done in Jawaharlal Nehru University. The same could happen throughout India. Fortunately, the Ram janmabhoomi movement – the largest people’s movement since independence – emerged and directly challenged the artificial narrative that the Nehruvian state was imposing on the soul of India.
Had the Nehruvian state faced this challenge with facts, and in the spirit of democracy, today we would have had a majestic Ram temple in Ayodhya. Unfortunately, the Nehruvian deep state responded with bullets and false propaganda. And then, history unfolded at human cost.
The Ram temple in Ayodhya is the spirit of India that does not seek revenge for the past, but one that seeks reconciliation and justice. A Ram temple in Ayodhya is the most natural thing to happen. Trying to stop that can only accelerate hatred among communities.
Today, this wisdom has dawned on all concerned parties. The oldest litigant for the Babri stricture came out with a statement that he would like to see a Ram temple there. By allowing the building of a Ram temple at the very site demanded by the Hindus in Ayodhya, the judiciary will ease out the most dangerous fault-line that exists between the artificial Nehruvian state and the organic Hindu nation, a line that threatens the very existence of India as a nation-state.