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Ayodhya litigant Ansari claims threat to life

Source: PTI
October 06, 2010 11:06 IST
The oldest litigant in the Ayodhya title suit case, Mohammad Hashim Ansari, has claimed a threat to his life, saying people playing politics over the issue were plotting to kill him.

"When I started to talk about peace with Mahant Gyandas Ansari (president of the Akhil Bharatiya Akhara Parishad), those doing politics on this issue felt their shops will get closed and are issuing threats and plotting to eliminate me," Ansari claimed.

The 90-year-old maintained that he started exploring the possibility of an amicable solution only after the consent of the Sunni Central Waqf Board, a claim denied by the latter.

Ansari said if the issue could be sorted out through talks, it should be done.

"If the issue could be sorted out through talks today, tomorrow or two months, it should be done. After all we have three months time," he said.

Ansari said he was deeply hurt by the Sunni Waqf Board counsel Zafaryab Jilani's statement that he was merely a litigant. "Being a simple litigant means that I carry bags. It is an attack on prestige and an insult."

"I only intended to douse the flames of fundamentalism at any cost and Jilani cannot become a hindrance for me," Ansari, who is making efforts for an out-of-court settlement in the Ayodhya title dispute, said.

Demanding an apology from Jilani, Ansari said if the Sunni Waqf Board's counsel did not take his words back then he will not pursue the case further. "If Jilani does not apologise then I will finish this issue right here and will not talk to anyone on the Babri mosque."

"To keep Hashim mum is almost impossible and I will establish harmony at all cost," he said.

Ansari also appealed to Hindus not to fight and to keep calm.

"I would like to request my Hindu brothers not to fight because it will result in a loss to the nation and the community as well," Ansari said.

He said people know how honestly he struggled for the cause of the mosque for 60 years. "I hope the people and media will continue to support me."

Soon after the verdict, Ansari had called for burying the dispute and making "a fresh start", a view shared by 84-year-old Mahant Bhaskar Das of the Nirmohi Akhara, another litigant.

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