Oldest Babri litigant Hashim Ansari passes away
Faizabad: The death of Hashim Ansari, the oldest petitioner in the Babri mosque case which had shaken the country in early nineties, may create a roadblock for out-of-court settlement of the dispute.
Although he had been fighting the case since as early as 1949, he had softened his stand in recent years and expressed himself in favour of reaching a compromise with Hindu litigants and organizations backing them.
His death is a setback to those elements who wanted to reach a settlement themselves and not entirely depend on the Supreme Court where the case is pending.
And he had not expressed this desire privately. He had openly talked to media persons about it. The problem then and even now is that there are many people on the either side of the fence who are more interested in keeping the issue alive. There is no need of a political pundit to know why.
It suits Hindu outfits because it can keep them together. Muslim organization opposed to them are not different. Settlement is difficult to reach in all the cases where the contestants are uncompromising.
Legally, his death will not make any difference. His son or any other ward can fight the legal battle. So, it is only the peace lovers who have been orphaned by his death.
His death will be also mourned by some religious Hindu leaders who he would often meet despite the legal battle. On occasions like Holi he would see to it that the houses of Hindu friends have not remained un-visited.
What may not be liked by fanatics and may not be believed by likes of them is that he would often go to the lower court in a cycle-rickshaw with the oldest Hindu petitioner in the case, Ramchandra Paramhans. He was an example of the Ganga-Jamuni Tehzib, the oldest Awadh tradition ,for which Uttar Pradesh in general and Faizabad in particular ,is known.