A tree sapling plantation drive and raising of the national flag will mark the formal beginning of the project to construct a mosque at Uttar Pradesh’s Ayodhya set to be built following the landmark Supreme Court verdict in the decades-long dispute over its site, officials announced on Saturday.
The Indo-Islamic Cultural Foundation (IICF) trust, which will build the mosque on a five-acre plot away from the site where the 14th-century Babri mosque was demolished by Hindu activists in 1992, said it was planning a ceremony to mark the beginning of the project on January 26 at 8:30 am.
The nine trustees of the foundation held a meeting on Sunday and said they discussed the programme and issues like the delay in getting clearances from the Income Tax Department and those for receiving foreign contributions.
The tree plantation drive has been planned because the project intends to serve the community in the area and create awareness about climate change as a major challenge to humanity, the IICF said in a news release.
“As envisaged in the project, a green area will be developed to have plants from all over the world from Amazon rainforest to areas having bushfires in Australia and from all different geographical regions of India to create awareness for imminent threat of climate change,” it said.
The group said it will also apply for getting the construction plan, which includes a hospital, museum, library, community kitchen, Indo-Islamic cultural research centre, a publication house, cleared by the Ayodhya District Board and start the soil testing process.
Last month, the IICF had unveiled the futuristic design of the mosque, incorporating a massive glass dome across a picturesque garden. The hospital building with an elegant design is seen behind the mosque.
The construction of the new mosque was taken up after the Supreme Court of India in November 2019 brought the curtains down on the long-standing religious dispute over the site in Ayodhya, saying it belonged to Lord Ram.
A five-judge constitution bench ruled that a “prominent site” in the same holy town will be allotted for a new mosque, in place of the one unlawfully razed down by Hindu activists, triggering communal violence across India that left thousands dead.