THE RAM TEMPLE IN INDIA - SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT

Ram Mandir Ayodhya

Watch and Share: Setting the Record Straight in Two Minutes

Featured Articles

India Today Cover Page on Ram Mandir

The Archaelogical Evidence

Was a Temple razed in Ayodhya?  What the stones say

Justice for Thee, not for me?

If you care about justice and truth then why do you call my celebration of Ram Temple as “Hindu Triumphalism”? asks Author Sahana Singh

WHAT'S THE ISSUE?

The new Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, India is a momentous milestone – emblematic of faith and devotion as well as patience and persistence. For over 500 years, Hindus have waged a struggle to recover a sacred site where Bhagwan Ram, one of our most popular deities, was born. In November 2019, a judgment from the Indian Supreme Court finally settled the issue – after years of deliberation and review of evidence and arguments from both sides. The judgment was widely praised by most stakeholders as well as former litigants like Iqbal Ansari and important Indian Muslim bodies like the Shia Waqf Board.

The new temple was inaugurated on Jan 22, 2024 amid an outpouring of joy in India across communities and by millions around the world, including prominent Muslim groups like the All India Imam Organization. 

Yet, we are seeing attempts in western media to once again create controversy and obfuscate the issue.

Any honest discussion of the issue must be grounded in some key points and facts about this long battle for reclaiming a historic and sacred site for hundreds of millions of people around the world:

  • The Babri structure was built by a Mughal invader over a temple deeply sacred to the indigenous people of the land. The fight to reclaim the space, which is the birthplace of Bhagwan Ram, one of the most popular Hindu deities, started almost immediately after and has been waged for 500 years by followers of all dharmic faiths including Hindus, Sikhs, and Jains.
  • In a century of litigation, opponents were unable to prove that the Muslim community had been actively using the structure for prayer or other devotional activities. On the other hand, accounts of Ayodhya city from uninterested third parties like William Finch (1608 CE), Joannes de Laet (1631), and Austrian Jesuit Joseph Tieffenthaler (1740 CE), all the way through British accounts in the 19th century, describe continuous Hindu worship at the site. 
  • Noted archaeologists like K.K. Muhammed, who were part of the investigations dating back to 1976, have clearly stated that the Babri structure was built over a Hindu temple, as proven by the evidence unearthed – numerous pillars, stone imagery, carvings featuring sacred Hindu symbols like the “purna kalash,” the “magar pranala,” and much more. 
  • Assertions to the contrary mostly came from Marxist historians, who were exposed in the courts for making these claims, without having ever visited the site or having any knowledge of the historic languages (Persian, Sanskrit, etc.), which would allow them to study original documents.
  • The Shia Waqf Board, an important Muslim cleric body, has also supported the idea that the Babri mosque was built on a destroyed Hindu temple and that a mosque can be built at a reasonable distance from the birthplace of Bhagwan Ram.
  • The new temple has been built entirely from crowd sourced private donations AFTER a unanimous judgment by the Indian Supreme Court, assigning the land for a Ram Temple. The courts had meticulously examined a plethora of evidence, testimony, and claims dating back centuries.

To claim the new temple is “contentious/controversial/contested” is to deny the legitimacy of the many respected institutions of the Indian state that oversaw and settled this issue. Far from being controversial, the event needs to be celebrated since it marks one of the few times an indigenous faith has used the law of the land to recover a place of worship destroyed by colonizers and occupying forces!

We urge lawmakers, media, allies, and the general public to exercise caution and not fall prey to propaganda and Hinduphobia.

PROF. MEENAKSHI JAIN ON RECLAMATION OF AYODHYA, KASHI & MATHURA

ARCHAEOLOGIST KK MUHAMMED's INTERVIEW ON THE RAM JANMABHOOMI