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The day the river ran red

Source : Google photo of the Ram temple under construction in Ayodhya, India

Synopsis: It is always difficult to read the pages of history books where you learn about the injustices people suffered all over the world who only wanted to claim freedom to live the life they wanted and to practice their faith in peace. When it was denied, they took to the streets to protest and were killed so their history was literally written in their blood. Today this struggle for justice and freedom still continues in many parts of the world. Read this sad story of the sacrifices Hindus in India made to live and pray to their Gods peacefully.

The day the Saryu river ran red with the blood of the Hindu devotees of Shri Ram in Ayodhya, I was in my hometown. Someone came running out of breath to tell us that there was a massacre in Ayodhya that day in 1992.

I was in shock like everyone else because no one expected to hear that the police had opened fire on unarmed Hindus who were protesting at the site of a mosque. They wanted to demolish the Babri masjid that had been built there where there used to be a temple of Ram. It was ordered by the Mughal King Babur in the 15th century to be demolished to build a mosque. This was not the only Hindu temple demolished by Babur who was a fanatic Moslem . His descendants who ruled India for centuries did the same in the name of their faith because their Quran approved it.

All over India,the Hindu temples were desecrated and demolished to build mosques on top often with the stones recovered from the demolished temples. Other monuments were erected like in Delhi called Qutub Minar that is the tallest tower in India but the Islamic rulers destroyed the temple complex there and used its stones to build the tower. They did not care to hide the markings on the stones that clearly showed that it was a Hindu temple there , such was their arrogance.They were the rulers so they could do anything they wanted like killing of Hindus and destruction of their holy places of worship.

After all, their Quran clearly mentions that such horrible acts against the non-believers were quite praiseworthy so the fanatics said that they were only following what was written in their holy book.They felt no remorse . What is surprising is the fact that such horrible acts are still being committed by the fanatics who do it in the name of their holy book and to make terrorism a common household word worldwide.

The large number of Hindu devotees in Ayodhya that day were only claiming what was theirs so they demolished the mosque practically with their bare hands until the armed policemen arrived and opened fire on them. Their blood flowed to the river Saryu and made it red while the vultures circled high above. They were immune to the wail and agony of those who were injured while the policemen refilled their carbines with bullets like those German guards in the concentration camps of Germany. They fired more than 500 rounds to kill as many people and injure many more.

So people asked who gave the order to fire on the unarmed Hindu devotees? It was the chief minister of the State who won election by his appeasement policy toward the Moslem voters who helped him win election. Police said that they were simply following orders just like the guards of Auschwitz and similar camps who gunned down 6 million Jews in Europe and showed no mercy or remorse. They too were following orders.

The sad part is that this Hindu hating chief minister was given a national award after his death by the present government of India for his black deeds but It claims to support the demands of all Hindus in the country who want their Ram temple to be rebuilt. 

Finally after waiting for some 550 years, the Supreme Court of India came to a decision that Ram temple should be built again in Ayodhya so the Hindus contributed millions of Rupees for the construction.The prime minister laid the foundation of the temple in 2019 after the verdict so the construction began. It is being built with private donations that keep flowing to the coffers from donors all over the country and abroad. Some have sold all their land and properties to do so while the Hindu diaspora living abroad continues to send money in great quantity.

It is interesting that some Moslems now admit that Babur committed a great sin 550 years ago so they are now trying to atone for it by donating money to build the grand temple in Ayodhya. People from many Moslem countries are also donating money and many Moslem leaders will attend the ceremony planned for the 22nd of January this year.

If you turn on the TV , you will see the progress being made in the construction of the huge Ram temple in Ayodhya where the Babri masjid used to stand and where the statue of Ram will soon be established by the Prime Minister of India on January 22, 2024. The completion of the entire temple complex and its auxiliary buildings on the premises may take a few more years but the devotees want to see their God established there as soon as possible so thousands of workers are toiling day and night to meet the deadline of January 22 this coming month.

But the struggle to build a Ram temple started some 550 years ago before the advent of the British in India but the Moguls who ruled India ignored this demand and went on to demolish more Hindu holy temples in very large numbers. Those who resisted were killed so the slaughter continued even after India became independent.Then came the British to colonize and stayed until a great patriot warrior called Netaji Bose chased them out through his armed struggle in 1947. The British showed no interest in rebuilding the Ram temple for the Hindus when they ruled.

So the Hindus took the matter to the Supreme court but there as well the case remained dormant due to the clever lawyers of the Moslems who had no interest in resolving the issue. Now some 550 years had passed so the Hindus became impatient and took the matter into their own hands on the day when the police came to kill them. Those who survived, vowed to continue their struggle and waited until a new Hindu leader came to power who declared in his election manifesto that it was his top priority to build the Ram temple.

Then one day the Supreme Court of India gave the verdict in the favor of the Hindus in a unanimous agreement that Ram temple had been illegally demolished by Babur so a new Ram temple should be built there. The whole country and all the Hindus living abroad rejoiced and started collecting money to build the greatest temple ever built in the country.

Babur must be turning in his grave somewhere but his followers did not take kindly to this discomfiture of Babur so they have vowed to someday demolish the temple again and rebuild a mosque there. It reminds me of the Jews who still wait for justice in their favor to build their temple at the temple mount of Jerusalem but no one knows how many more centuries they have to wait. Will their Supreme court one day give them justice by giving a verdict that the mosque built on their holy temple mount was illegally built by the Moslems? In the matter of faith, people are willing to die to achieve their goal just like in India. Over 6 million Jews perished because someone hated them. How many more have to die before their temple mount is cleared where they will be allowed to rebuild their temple?

All religions like the Christianity, Islam and others have their holy places like the Vatican or the Mecca except the Hindus who have suffered for centuries in the hands of the hordes of assailants who came to India to loot, desecrate the Hindu temples and massacre them. Others were forcibly converted to Islam with the threat of death.

But what is happening in India today is a mass revival of a Hindu nationalist sentiment that is widespread . They no longer want to wait any longer and want to rebuild all the demolished temples in the country. This revival is what the non Hindus were least expecting and are at a loss to understand how to counter this nationwide movement. 

Some are resorting to violence while others are planning to blow up the new Ram temple but they also know that they will not succeed . When the 80% population that follows Hinduism and decides enough is enough, it will bring out the collective will of more than a Billion people. No foreign religion can withstand such a tsunami like what happened in Spain centuries ago. After a fierce battle with the Moslems , the Spaniards won and chased the deeply entrenched Moslems away forever. Watch the movie El Cid to learn more.

The imposition of a foreign religion on the native population in any country faces stiff resistance often leading to bloodshed so today it is an obsolete idea. Now people fight back through the courts , mass demonstrations everywhere or simply destroy the illegally built edifices by the outsiders. The courts can delay a case but can never dismiss it without hearing so people wait. Then comes a change one day when the old hard headed judges retire and are replaced by more pragmatic young judges who favor a verdict that gives justice to prove that they are not called justices for nothing. 

It takes courage to face up to the challenges the societies face everywhere so some people step up to shed their blood if need be. Such people become immortal and are mentioned in the pages of history forever. Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Steven Biko, Nelson Mandela, Fidel Castro, Walter Sisulu, Kwame Nkrumah, Che Guevara, Djamila Boupacha, Bhagat Singh, Chandrashekhar Ajaad, Khudiram Bose, Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, Queen Laksmi Bai, Udham Singh all sacrificed themselves because they stood up against the tyrants and injustice. Their sacrifice won them the end of Apartheid, end of discrimination against the blacks, end of slavery, end of the British empire ,independence and the end of forced conversion to other religions.

These pages are not enough to list all the heroes who died so that others could live freely but one thing is sure. There will always be people who will protest the injustice and fight it even if they have to shed their own blood.

Let us hope that the waters of Saryu in Ayodhya or anywhere will never again be stained by the blood of people who only want justice.

I wish the Indian leaders will recognise the sacrifices the devotees of Ram made in Ayodhya in 1992 and will write in golden letters their names in a plaque to be placed in the new Ram temple to remind the generations to come that their sacrifices were not in vain.

But who reads my blogs and who will put such a plaque in Ayodhya? The blind folded lady holding the balance of justice in front of every courtroom in the world sheds silent tears at all the injustice in the world. 

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Amal Chatterjee

I am the village bard who loves to share his stories.