New Delhi: Former Regional Director of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), K. K. Mohammad, said that the long wall and circular shrine excavated from the disputed site in Ayodhya is part of a Hindu temple and not an Idgah Masjid or Kannati Masjid.
K. K. Muhammad, who was part of the digging team of ASI to ascertain if there was a temple under the Babri Masjid structure, cited archeological and literary evidences to back his claims.
Muhammad said, “Archaeology is a science and ASI is an independent agency, and it submitted a scientific report to the Allahabad High Court. If the wall were to be an Idgah or part of an Islamic structure, then how will you explain the recovery of terracotta (sculptures of god and goddesses) and ‘makara pranali’, the image of a crocodile, which is a symbol of river Ganga. These are not part of Islamic culture.”
Stressing that a temple existed under the Babri Masjid, he said, “The Masjid was not built on virgin soil and the ASI report established it scientifically. The imagery of living beings is not integral to Islamic religious places. The huge wall and pillars dates back to a temple, which existed there around 12th century AD.”
Mohammad also said that the shrine was not Islamic in nature and dated way back to the 10 century AD.
The former ASI official also cited literary evidences that backs the theory that a temple stood there before it was destroyed by Mughal king Babar and a mosque built on top of it.
He cited a document during the reign of Emperor Akbar which states that Hindus gathered at the disputed site to worship Lord Ram.
Mohammad also quoted the travelogues of two Western travellers who visited India during the 15th and 16th Centuries.
William Finch who visited India between 1607 and 1611 wrote, The castle built four hundred years ago. Here are also the ruins of Ranichand castle and houses, which the Indians acknowledge for the great God, saying that he took flesh upon him to see the ‘tamasha’ of the world.”
Another traveller Joseph Tiefenthaler gave his account about his visit of Ayodhya between 1766 and 1771 and speaks of Hindus coming to the site and worshiping by doing the Parikrama thrice and prostrating on the ground.
These evidences show that Hindus have been praying at the disputed site in Ayodhya for centuries since the temple was destroyed.