The Uttar Pradesh Shia Central Waqf Board (UPSCWB) Monday said it was the commander of Babar’s army who had built a mosque in the midst of temples in Ayodhya in early 16th century, thus sowing seeds of discord between Hindus and Muslims. “Mir Baqi was the commander of Babar’s army. He was a Shia and used the Mughal army against the feelings of the Hindus by building a grand mosque located in middle of temples in Ayodhya in 1528-29. He sowed the seeds of dispute,” UPSCWB Chairman Waseem Rizvi said in a statement here.
The statement comes days after the Board told the Supreme Court that a mosque could be built in a Muslim-dominated area at a reasonable distance from the disputed site in Ayodhya. The Board also told the apex court in an affidavit on August 8 that the Babri Masjid site was its property and only it was entitled to hold negotiations for an amicable settlement of the dispute.
“Shia Waqf Board has decided that through mutual agreement, a mosque will be built away from the disputed site and in a Muslim-dominated area,” Rizvi said in the statement today. He said the Shia Waqf Board will not name that mosque on Babar or on his commander Mir Baqi.
“The Board wants that the name of the mosque should end all the disputes. The new mosque will be named Masjid-e-Aman, which will spread message of amity in the country,” he said. “I also elicited opinion from Ayotullahs (top clerics) of Iraq and Iran, and was told there is no room for any fight or dispute. The solution should be arrived at through talks and in a friendly atmosphere,” Rizvi said.
Rizvi said, “Due to the action of Mir Baqi, there has been a dispute between Hindus and Muslims, in which thousands of lives have been lost. Today, the mosque does not exist there, but some Muslim clerics who get funds from foreign countries to spread terrorism, are indulging in maligning Islam.” He said that owing to “bad deeds” of Mir Baqi, Goswami Tulsidas (the author of Ramcharit Manas) had referred to him as “neech” (petty).