Iqbal Ansari, one of the main litigants from the Muslim side in the Ayodhya suit, tells Arshad Afzaal Khan why his participation in the bhoomi pujan was justified.
Your father Hashim Ansari spent his entire life fighting for the Babri mosque. How did you feel after attending the bhoomi pujan of the Ram temple?
Yes, my father fought for Babri Masjid and after his death I took over his mantle and was the litigant in the Ayodhya title suit. We were fighting a legal battle. After the Supreme Court verdict, it is our duty to accept the judgment in its spirit.
I went to Ram Janmabhoomi to send out a message that Muslims are not against the Ram temple.

How do you see the apex court verdict in context of Muslims?
The Supreme Court verdict clearly states that Muslims did not demolish a temple to build the mosque. Our Hindu brothers are with us and we are with them in their moment of joy.
What did you tell the Prime Minister?
I wanted to present him a copy of Ramcharitmanas, but due to the Covid-19 pandemic, he did not accept gifts. We exchanged greetings. The general secretary of Ram Mandir Trust, Champat Rai, accepted the book on his behalf.
What’s there for Muslims post-Ram temple?
Majority of Hindus are very tolerant. Ram is their belief and if we respect their faith, there will be no conflict between the two communities after the temple comes up.


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