OIC Criticizes Building Ram Mandir At Babri Masjid Site
The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) issued a statement on Tuesday condemning the construction and inauguration of the ‘Ram Mandir’ on the site of the historic Babri Masjid in Ayodhya, India. The OIC, representing a 57-member bloc of Muslim nations, expressed “grave worry” over the building of the temple at the location where the Babri Masjid stood for five centuries. The General Secretariat denounced these actions, aligning with the OIC’s previous positions that emphasize preserving Islamic landmarks.
Pakistan also voiced condemnation, characterizing the temple’s inauguration as a “symbol of growing majoritarianism and an affront to the Muslim community in India.” The Foreign Office (FO) expressed concerns about the trajectory of majoritarianism in India, citing the temple’s consecration as a negative development. The FO labeled the new temple as a “blot on the face of India’s democracy” and raised apprehensions about the potential threats faced by other mosques in the country, including the Gyanvapi Mosque in Varanasi and the Shahi Eidgah Mosque in Mathura.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi officiated the consecration ceremony at a grand event attended by around seven thousand guests. The new temple was built on the site where the Babri Masjid stood before being demolished by a Hindutva mob in 1992, leading to religious riots and significant unrest. The destruction of the mosque had profound consequences, causing the death of 2,000 people, primarily Muslims, and impacting the secular political order in India.
For Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the opening of the Ram Mandir marks a pivotal moment in their longstanding campaign to align governance with the country’s majority faith. The event, however, faced criticism in India, with opposition parties accusing the government of turning it into a grand spectacle. Opposition figures, including Rahul Gandhi of the Congress party, criticized the “state-sponsored assault” on a pan-India peace march in the BJP-ruled Assam state.
The developments surrounding the inauguration of the Ram Mandir have garnered attention not only within India but also on the international stage, with the OIC expressing its concerns about the impact on historic Islamic landmarks and the broader implications for religious harmony in the region.