30 September 2010

Is India About to Explode? (UPDATED)

Troops are flooding the streets to quell the expected violence, no matter which way the ruling goes on the ownership of a holy site.

India sent hundreds of thousands of troops into the streets Thursday as it braced for a potential eruption of violence ahead of a court decision on whether Hindus or Muslims should control a disputed holy site.

The conflict over the compound in the town of Ayodhya, 350 miles (550 kilometers) east of New Delhi, has sparked communal riots that killed thousands of people and challenged India's ethos as a secular, multicultural democracy.

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"We have deployed around 200,000 security personnel at sensitive places to prevent any violence post the Ayodhya verdict," top state official Shashank Shekhar Singh said.

The 16th-century Babri Mosque in Ayodhya was razed by Hindu hard-liners in 1992, setting off nationwide riots that killed 2,000 people. Hindus say the mosque, built in 1528 by the Mughal emperor Babur, was erected at the birthplace of their god, Rama.

Hindus want to build a temple to Rama there, while Muslims want to rebuild the mosque.


The Indian court has tried to split the difference and give joint ownership of the site to everyone...

A disputed holy site in India will be divided in an attempt to satisfy competing religious claims to the site, the Allahabad High Court ruled Thursday.
Muslims, Hindus and a local sect all will get part of the land at Ayodhya, the court said.
Muslims have already said they will appeal to the Supreme Court.
Thousands of people have died in sectarian violence in India since Hindu extremists razed a Muslim mosque on the site in 1992. Many Hindus believe the site is the birthplace of one of their most revered deities.
They will be allowed to keep an idol in a makeshift temple under the central dome at the site, Judge S. U. Khan announced in his ruling. Khan is one of three judges on the high court.
"All three sets of parties, i.e., Muslims, Hindus and Nirmohi Akhara are declared joint title holders of the property," Khan wrote.

By: Brant

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