NEW DELHI: Maulana Arshad Madani, head of prominent Muslim body Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind (JUEH), on Wednesday said the community pursued the Ayodhya case for 70 years not because of the land but for its right.
He also said a decision on filing a review petition against the apex court order will be taken in a meeting of the working committee of the JUEH, which was one of the key litigants in the case, on Thursday.
Settling a fractious issue that goes back more than a century, the Supreme Court, in its verdict in the Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi title case on Saturday, said the entire 2.77 acres of disputed land should be handed over to the deity Ram Lalla, who was one of the three litigants in the case.
The five-judge Constitution bench also directed the Centre to allot a 5-acre plot to the Sunni Waqf Board in Ayodhya to build a mosque.
Citing the Islamic law Shariat, Maulana Madani said the Babri mosque was only as important as any other mosque in the country.
"According to the Shariat, only three mosques are important. They are Masjid al-Haram in Mecca, Masjid-e-Nabvi in Madina and Bait-ul-Muqaddas in Jerusalem," he told PTI.
"If we wanted 5-acre land then we would not have fought the case for 70 years. Muslims have enough land. We have built mosques on our lands and will continue to do so. The land has been given to the Sunni Waqf Board. If it was given to us, we would have refused," he said.
Maulana Madani said it was a fight of principles and rights.
"Never before have idols (of Hindu gods) been placed in a mosque or a mosque razed. The Supreme Court also said that placing idols in a mosque and demolishing it is illegal," he said.
"The court accepted all this but still handed over the land to the Hindu litigants. This is why we are saying that this judgement is beyond our understanding. We had placed all the evidence before the court and had hoped that it will take a decision based on that and not faith. But the court gave its decision on the basis of faith," he said.
"The Muslims of the country have faith in the judiciary and respect this order," he added.
The JUEH president said it was a matter of happiness for the Muslims that the court accepted that they "did not build the (Babri) mosque by demolishing a temple during Babur's rule".
Asked how the Muslim community views the judgement, he said, "It is a very good thing that despite the verdict being against them, the Muslims did not stage any protest and controlled their emotions.I hope it will be the same in the future as well."
Maulana Masood also lauded the Hindus for not holding any celebrations and said it was "crucial for maintaining peace."