While the preparations for Bhoomi Pujan of Ram Temple are on schedule, the construction activities for the Mosque on the alternate land have slowed down amid Covid-19 pandemic. Sunni Central Waqf Board of Uttar Pradesh said that they got the land from the Uttar Pradesh government on Supreme Court’s instructions on time. However, the other formalities are still pending.
Hindi daily Live Hindustan reported that the Waqf Board was the major Muslim party in the lawsuit related to the ownership of the disputed site. The board had earlier said that apart from Mosque, they are planning to construct an Islamic research centre, hospital and library. Zufar Ahmad Farooqui, board president, said that the government allotted five acres of land in Dhunipur village of Sohawal tehsil in Ayodhya district. The allocation was on time, but then everything slowed down because of the pandemic followed by the lockdown.
Farooqui said that the formation of trust that will handle construction of Mosque etc. is still pending. The trust will have 15 members, and they have only confirmed eight names. He said that they would choose those who have progressive thinking and can provide support and resource for the construction and other work. The construction work should boost after Bhoomi Pujan of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya.
Hindustan asked him if he expects any support from All India Muslim Personal Law Board and other leading Muslim organizations, Farooqui said that he has no hope from them. He added that they would take support from the public to complete the construction work. The trust will decide on how the funds will be raised.
Since the verdict awarded the Ram Janmabhoomi site to the Hindus and the rejection of review petitions effectively shut down any scope for further politicisation, the enthusiasm that Muslim groups had previously shown is nowhere visible. Farooqui said that the Muslim Personal Law Board already said that they are not happy with the land allotted for the Mosque. Thus expecting any support from them will not be right.
Though the Muslim Personal Law Board and several other organizations said they do not accept the land, the Waqf board announced that they would build a mosque, Indo-Islamic Research Center, Hospital and Library on the land.
Ram Mandir Bhoomi Pujan to be held on 5th August
On 9th November 2019, the Supreme Court of India gave its decision in favour of Ram Lala Virajman and allowed construction of Bhavya Ram Mandir on the disputed site. The court also directed the Government of India to give 5 acres of land to the Muslim community to build a Mosque at an alternate site.
As per orders by the apex court, the central government had started the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust within 3 months of the verdict. Key Hindu spiritual leaders associated with the Ram Janmabhoomi movement were announced as the members and the Trust has been supervising the preparatory work for the construction of the temple.
In March this year, on the dawn of the first day of Chaitra Navratri, the idol of Ram Lalla Virajman was shifted from the tent and was placed in a temporary shrine made up of bulletproof fibre at the Ram Janmabhoomi site in the hands of UP CM and Gorakh Peethadheeshwar Yogi Adityanath. The idol of Ram Lalla was placed on a 9 kg silver throne.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Ayodhya on 5th August to take part in Bhoomi Pujan of the Ram Mandir, to formally inaugurate the temple construction.