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Published in the 16-31 May 2005 print edition of MG; send me the print edition

Kalbe Sadiq-Katiyar meeting

By Masood Hasan

The Milli Gazette Online

Lucknow: The meeting of the senior vice-president of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) Maulana Kalbe Sadiq with the firebrand BJP leader Vinay Katiyar at the latter’s residence in Lucknow has shocked the Muslim leaders and the clergy alike. The Babri Masjid issue has reportedly figured during their talks creating a fresh row and a hot discussion among the Muslim religious leaders in Uttar Pradesh.

On the other hand, member of the AIMPLB and Naib Imam of the Eidgah Maulana Khalid Rasheed said that the Board has taken a decision at the recent meeting in Bhopal that no one is competent to talk except the AIMPLB on the Babri Masjid issue. If any member of the AIMPLB holds talks on this contentious issue, it means that he violates the Board’s decision, he said.

Maulana Yasoob Abbas, a member of the newly formed outfit All India Shia Personal Law Board, told this correspondent here that there was no change in the stand of the Shia Personal Law Board on the Babri Masjid.

Vinay Katiyar was at the forefront for the demolition of Babri Masjid in Ayodhya on December 6, 1992 and was a leading figure in the Ram Mandir movement. Both the leaders have dubbed the meeting as a courtesy call. The Maulana has admitted that he had called on the BJP leader Vinay Katiyar at the latter’s residence to thank him for his stand against the maltreatment meted out to him at the Chicago airport during his recent visit to the US.

Maulana Kalbe Sadiq was deported to London from the Chicago Airport and he was savagely interrogated by the officials of the United States for three days while he remained detained in inhuman conditions at the airport. The action of the US officials irked Vinay Katiyar and he fired a salvo at US officials for their inhuman treatment to the Maulana. The Maulana has said that some people for their gains wanted to widen the gap between the two communities and dialogue is the only way to sink differences for finding out solution to thorny issues.

Vinay Katiyar says that a firm stand taken by him in favour of Maulana Kalbe Sadiq was the cause for his happiness and he called on him at his residence. 

The contentious issues confronting the Muslim community and amicable settlement of the Masjid/Mandir issue figured during their talks and this is what shocked the Muslim religious leaders who failed to appreciate the reason why the Maulana discussed contentious issues with that leader of the BJP who had played a pivotal role during the demolition of the Babri Masjid. The fact is that when the AIMPLB took up the Babri Masjid issue for a discussion at its Bhopal conference, the Maulana reportedly did not utter even a single word.

A member of the AIMPLB from Lucknow who attended the Bhopal conference told this correspondent on condition of anonymity that Kalbe Sadiq did not participate in a fair manner in the ongoing discussion on the pending cases relating to Babri Masjid and remained silent at the conference. 
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