In his first remark on the ongoing disputed Gyanvapi mosque row, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat said on Thursday, June 2, that the disputed structure of the Gyanvapi mosque has a history that cannot be disputed. Several temples were desecrated by Islamic invaders, and Hindu society just intends to recover them. “It’s simply a matter of faith. Hindus are not opposed to Muslims. Issues have only been raised over places in which Hindus have special devotion,” said the RSS chief while speaking in Nagpur during the concluding ceremony of an RSS training programme.
#Gyanvapi matter is ongoing. Can’t change history. Neither today’s Hindus nor today’s Muslims created it. It happened at that time.Islam came from outside via attackers. In the attacks,Devsthans were demolished to exhaust morale of those who wanted India’s independence: RSS chief pic.twitter.com/SZfIxou0NJ— ANI (@ANI) June 2, 2022
The RSS chief further said, “We cannot change history. Neither today’s Hindus nor Muslims created it. It happened at that time. Islam was brought into India from outside by the Islamic invaders. In the attacks, hundreds of Devasthans (temples) were demolished to crush the morale of those who wanted independence. The Hindu society places a special emphasis on them, special reverence is about them.”
The RSS chief added that Hindus are not against Muslims. The ancestors of today’s Muslims were Hindus too,” said Bhagwat. “Hindus have no animosity for Muslims. At the period, the ancestors of today’s Muslims were also Hindus. The desecration was done to crush their morale and spirt and rob them of their independence for all time, thus Hindus believe it should be restored.”
Mohan Bhagwat said that mosques are also places of worship and nobody opposes them in general. “Islam came from the outside, but the Muslims who have accepted Islam are not outsiders and they must understand this. We don’t mind if their prayer comes from outside (this country) and they want to continue with it,” he stated, adding, “We are not opposed to any kind of religion or worship.”
The RSS chief further stated that the RSS is not in the favour of any sort of agitation or launching any kind of movement for reclaiming temples. “On November 6, we took part in the Ram Janmabhoomi Andolan because circumstances were such. Although it was against our nature, we agreed to participate for historical reasons and to accommodate the existing crisis. We also accomplished what people want. But, now, we don’t want to call for anymore agitation,” he said.
‘We have devotion towards Gyanpavi but no point opening up battles in every mosque’: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat
While the RSS chief supported the move to reclaim the original Kashi Vishwanath temple from the Gyanvapi mosque site, he said that it should not be repeated with each and every mosque in the country. “We shouldn’t bring out a new matter daily. Why should we escalate the dispute? We have devotion towards Gyanvapi and we are doing something as per that, it is alright. But why look for a Shivling in every masjid?” asked the RSS chief, implying that while it is undeniable that there are numerous Muslim structures in the form of Mazar, mosques, dargah, forts, eidgahs, and others that were built on temple sites and/or used temple materials, it is pointless to raise the issue for each of them because it will only lead to disputes and open up battles in every mosque, which he advised is pointless.
#WATCH | “…We shouldn’t bring out a new matter daily. Why should we escalate dispute? We have devotion towards #Gyanvapi and we are doing something as per that, it is alright. But why look for a Shivling in every masjid?…” says RSS chief as he speaks on Gyanvapi mosque issue. pic.twitter.com/eYLmaEEQY4— ANI (@ANI) June 2, 2022
“If there are issues in mind, it rises. It is not against anyone. It should not be considered like that. Muslims should not consider it like that and Hindus too should not do that either. There is something like that, find out a path through mutual agreement,” Bhagwat said.
The RSS chief further said that whenever people approach the court then they must be ready to accept the court’s judgement. “We must follow the decisions of our judicial system by considering it sacred and supreme and not question them,” he added.
The disputed structure of the Gyanvapi Mosque, built on the premises of the Kashi Viswanath Temple in Varanasi, is currently embroiled in a legal battle. Five Hindu women devotees have petitioned a Varanasi court for permission to perform daily puja of Gods and Goddesses on the walls of the mosques.
Earlier this month, a Shivling was reported to have been found inside the disputed structure at Gyanvapi mosque’s wuzukhana, the place where Muslims wash their hands and legs, and gargle before offering namaz.
The reports came in the aftermath of a three-day videography survey of the disputed structure carried out by the authorities.
Recently, new videos and photos surfaced online showing Shivling inside the wuzukhana of the mosque, along with the motifs of Swastika, Trishul, Lotus and Hindu deities engraved on the walls of the basement.