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'Namaz is synonymous with mosques'


ANI New Delhi [India]
After the Supreme Court decided against referring the 1994 Ismail Faruqui case to a larger constitutional bench, Haji Mehboob, one of the petitioners in the Babri Masjid case, on Thursday described the move of the top court as questionable.
Speaking to ANI, Mehboob said, "I cannot have any say to the judgement passed by the Supreme Court. However, I feel it is mandatory to offer prayers (namaz) at the mosque. I can also question, why do Hindus go to temples to offer their prayers? To me, namaz is synonymous with mosques."
Meanwhile, another petitioner to the Babri Masjid case Iqbal Ansari welcomed the apex court's judgment, saying it would not "affect the Muslims at large" and the sanctity of namaz would remain the same if one chooses to offer it from home instead of visiting a mosque.
"We welcome the Supreme Court's decision. A namaz will be a namaz whether it is in masjid or somewhere else. This will certainly not affect the Muslims in a big way. After all, the fight is over the Babri Masjid and Ram Mandir and not namaz. This won't affect the matter pertaining to Ayodhya as well," Ansari told ANI.
Announcing its verdict on the issue of reference of Ram Mandir-Babri Masjid case to a larger bench, the Supreme Court held that all religions and religious places need to be equally respected. "Ashoka's edicts preach tolerance to faith of others," said Justice Ashok Bhushan as he read out the verdict.
The court pronounced the decision on the limited aspect of whether the law laid down by the Supreme Court in its 1994 judgement in Ismail Faruqui case should be revisited by a Constitution Bench. The top court said that it will begin hearing the Ramjanambhoomi-Babri Masjid matter from October 29 to decide the suit on merit.

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First Published: Sep 27 2018 | 7:10 PM IST

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