Hindu Leader 1: Three out of the four Hindu sects in Ayodhya are with
us. They are disgusted with the politicized methods which the VHP
employs in its anti-Muslim tactics.
Muslim Leader 2: In the VHP’s latest rally, they attempted to enlist
support for vows to build a temple to Ram on the site of the razed
mosque in Ayodhya. They do this deliberately in order to incite
warfare. They know we will never stand for such sacrilege.
Abbot: We are not without recourse. First, we will send delegations to
Hindu spiritual leaders in the surrounding area in order to keep
outsiders from entering Ayodhya during their rally. Then we will try to
persuade our own people to boycott the occasion. Then, if all else
fails, we will confront our fellow Hindus with the challenge, “You kill
Muslim Leader 3: People are already fleeing the city on the basis of
rumors. They are afraid of a repeat of the riots of 1992, when crazed
mobs burned down Muslim houses and killed innocent Muslims.
Abbot: I have heard the reports of the Muslims fleeing the town because
they don’t feel safe here. Such events should embarrass people who
promise ‘the rule of God’ (Rama) in India. But what do they care? Lord
Rama is just a polling agent for the VHP. But for those of us who
understand a little bit about dharma (moral law), the very thought of
terrified women and children fleeing their homes is shameful. This
cannot be tolerated. We must gather our allies—local intellectuals,
heads of religious establishments, and pilgrims—pledging them to
maintain peace in our temple town. Three days before the so-called
“devotees of Ram” are to march on Ayodhya, we will go to the Muslim
quarters of the city with friends and followers. By the time this group
of saffron-clad holy men fan out in the busy neighborhoods, we should
have well over 1,000 supporters deployed. We will make it a point to
visit first of all Mohammad Hashim, the oldest Muslim claimant to the
disputed land in Ayodhya. We will go to each house, assuring everyone
that they will not come to any harm. It will not be a political stunt.
I genuinely want the people of Ayodhya to feel safe. The VHP is an
embarrassment for the Hindus. I want to send out a signal. I want the
VHP to know Ayodhya would not tolerate them this time.
(All parties exit. After a pause, same group returns to stage.)
Hindu Leader 1: I have never in my life seen such a heartfelt welcome
as I did from the Muslim families whose homes we visited. They stood
outside with garlands in their hands and tears in their eyes. I don't
know how anyone can think of harming these innocents.
Abbot: The VHP must to be stopped, now. It is spreading poison in the
country. We must get the message out everywhere that “Nobody should