Detroit,Michigan:Inthewake of Allahabad High Court verdict on Ayodhya dispute, the 20th Annual Convention of the American Federation of Muslims of Indian Origin (AFMI) became significant as for the first time various Indian Muslim leaders and intelligentsia spoke on the Babri Masjid issue at any international stage.
The two-day convention was organized in Detroit on October 16-17, 2010 with the theme ‘Pluralism: Path to Peace and Prosperity’. Besides Allahabad High Court verdict, Pluralism, democracy, and minority rights in India were the focus of discussion at the convention attended by delegates from across United States and Canada.
saduddin Owaisi, Member of Parliament from Hyderabad & president of All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, Javed Akhtar, Bollywood lyricist & Member of the Rajya Sabha, Adv. Suhail Tirmizi, counsel for Gujarat riot victims, Gary Peters, US Congressman from Michigan were the main speakers who talked in length on the topics.
Speaking on the occasion, Barrister Asaduddin Owais, said: The cause of justice has suffered in India due to the verdict on Ayodhya by the Allahabad High Court. The verdict has harmed the reputation of India as a country governed by the rule of law and it is in national interest to take the matter to the Supreme Court. The case will definitely be pursued in the Supreme Court of India and it will argued by the country’s top legal luminaries.”
Pointing out the legal loopholes of the verdict Hyderabad MP Owaisi, an alumnus of Lincoln’s Inn, said the court has treated a deity ‘Ram Lalla’ as an eternal minor and a party to the suit but Babri Masjid was not accorded the same legal standing.
"Similarly, the court relied on a ‘dubious’ 2004 report by the Archaeological Survey of India which is known to be acting as a front organization of the Sangh Parivar. Additionally, the judgment overlooked the fact that animal bones and glazed ceramics were found at the site of the Babri Masjid” he added.
He said the mature reaction of the Indian Muslim community shouldn’t be mistaken for acceptance of the verdict. "We are absorbing the pain as mature and responsible community. That is why there is no violence. We will work within the legal framework. Muslim voters are going to teach a lesson to those responsible in the upcoming elections of Bihar, Assam, and Uttar Pradesh.” he warned.
Rejecting calls for a negotiated settlement he said the issue is of national importance and has the potential to open a whole array of irresolvable conflicts. The best thing under the present circumstances is to take the matter to the Supreme Court.
He further said that there is much talk about the astha (ethos) in the discussions of the Ayodhya verdict. The only astha that should matter in the legal arena is the ‘secular aastha’ and anything on the contrary is anti-thetical to the pluralist character of India.
Hailing India as a great civilization, superior to that of China, he said that it is vital for everyone concerned to take a principled stand on this issue.
In his speech, Mr. Javed Akhtar said that the India as a nation should move on and concentrate on bread and butter issues. He also said that the fundamentalism of any kind is an impediment in advancing the welfare of downtrodden.
He hailed Indian secularism as a boon for all communities and that it should be sustained at all costs.
At the end of the convention AFMI awarded some of the participants for their exemplary work in their respective fields.
Mr. Asaduddin Owaisi received AFMI’s Excellence Award for his ‘visionary leadership and effective representation of minority, especially those of Muslims, in the Indian parliament.
Mr. Javed Akhtar received AFMI’s Pride of India Award for his outstanding contributions to Urdu literature and for having achieved great distinction as a poet, lyricist, and script writer.
Mr. Suhel Tirmizi was awarded the Excellence Award for his unparallel commitment and courage to seek truth and justice for Gujarat violence victims, and for standing up against the forces of terror.’
Mr. Victor Ghalib Begg, a prominent community leader in North America, was given the Excellence Award for his ‘outstanding services in promoting understanding of Muslims and Islam through interfaith dialogue in the United States of America.
AFMI president Dr. Iqbal Ahmed and convention chairperson Mrs. Rizwana Khan also received appreciation awards in recognition of their long standing commitment and services to AFMI.
Other speakers of the convention included Dr. Nakadar, Prof. Zafar Khan, Mr. S.M.A. Quraishi, Dr. Sirajuddin Hashmi, Imam Sallie, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, Dr. Aslam Abdullah, Mr. Suhail Tirmizi, Dr. Hussain Nagamia, Mr. Ashfaq Quraishi, Dr. Syed Samee, Dr. Shakir Mukhi, Dr. Tajuddin Ahmed, Mrs. Rizwana Khan and Mr. Datta Padsalgika.
Courtesy :TCN News,Oct 19,2010