Why is BJP reluctant to discuss Places of Worship Act, asks Owaisi

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Asaduddin Owaisi, the Hyderabad MP and leader of AIMIM.

Hyderabad: AIMIM President Asaduddin Owaisi questioned the BJP’s reluctance to discuss the Places of Worship Act on Tuesday.

In a post on ‘X’, he pressed the BJP to clarify whether it would defend the constitutionality of the act in court. The Places of Worship Act of 1991 aims to prevent the conversion of any place of worship and ensures the maintenance of the religious character of such places as it existed on August 15, 1947.

Owaisi’s query came in response to a post by Amit Malvya, accusing him of communalising the consecration of the Ram Mandir.

Malvya claimed that in 2020, two mosques in Hyderabad were demolished to build the Secretariat, but Owaisi, the city’s Member of Parliament, remained silent.

Owaisi defended himself, stating that the demolished mosques were illegally torn down but subsequently reconstructed. He asserted that today, prayers are conducted in these reconstructed mosques, and the community, including AIMIM, protested the demolitions.

He pointed out the contrast with the Babri Masjid, which faced desecration in 1949, conversion to a temple in 1986, and eventual demolition in 1992. Owaisi questioned whether similar intentions exist for Kashi and Mathura, despite a Supreme Court judgment on the Babri Masjid issue, emphasising that while the Court is supreme, it is not infallible.

This exchange highlights the ongoing debate over religious sites and their preservation, with Owaisi challenging the BJP to address the Places of Worship Act’s implications and defend its constitutionality. The conversation also delves into historical incidents involving religious structures, illustrating the contentious nature of these issues in Indian politics.

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