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|1994. 24 Oct
||The Supreme Court of India, in judgment to settle a religious dispute between Hindus and Muslims, cited the Bahá’í Faith as an example and the Teachings of the Faith as guidelines for resolving such disputes. [BW94-95p130-131; One Country]
Background: On the 6th of December, 1992, the Babri mosque in the northern town of Ayodhya was razed by a group of Hindus because the mosque, built in 1528, had been erected on the spot where the Hindu deity Rama is said to have been born thousands of years earlier. The destruction enraged Muslims and ignited a grave crisis in India. Muslim and Hindu mobs attacked each other's houses of worship, homes and people in a number of cities, resulting in the death of hundreds and the destruction of property not only in India but in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and even in Britain. [Mess86-01p440]
The Bahá'í community had issued a statement in English that highlighted a central theme: “Communal Harmony—India’s Greatest Challenge.” The issue of religious conflict and the importance of harmony and peacebuilding were emphasized. This statement was later translated into most of the official languages of India and distributed to Ministers, bureaucrats, district county workers, the superintendent of police, NGOS, and faith communities.
The judges, in their ruling, quoted from the statement from the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of India Communal Harmony: India's Greatest Challenge. [Mess86-01p441]
A timeline for the case.
|New Delhi; India; Ayodhya
||Communal harmony; Communalism; Ethnic divisions; Conflict resolution; Statements; National Spiritual Assembly, statements; Public discourse
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- Communal Harmony: India's Greatest Challenge, by National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of India (1993(?)/2015). A formal statement from the NSA of the Bahá'ís of India on the need to overcome religious, linguistic and caste-based tensions. [about]
- Discussion with Farida Vahedi, Executive Director of the Department of External Affairs, National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of India, A, by Michael Bodakowski and Katherine Marshall (2011-03-02). Overview of Vahedi's life and work, history of the Faith in India and development projects, the Institute for Studies in Global Prosperity, and issues regarding migration and protection of women and girls. [about]
- Division and Unity in the Baha'i Community: Towards a Definition of Fundamentalism, by Moojan Momen (2009). 15 criteria that define "fundamentalism," and their applicability and/or inapplicability to the Bahá'í community; it may be more useful to use a psychological definition that sees the phenomenon as a value-free cognitive style, a way of perceiving. [about]
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