UP Waqf Board defers construction of hospital in Ayodhya for lack of funds
The Trust is handling a mega project under which a mosque, a charity hospital, and a community kitchen is supposed to be built
The paucity of funds has forced the Indo-Islamic Cultural Foundation Trust to defer the construction of a hospital in Ayodhya's Dhannipur, the location where the Waqf board was granted land after the historic Ram Mandir Supreme Court verdict in 2019.
The Trust is handling a mega project under which a mosque, a charity hospital, and a community kitchen is supposed to be built.
According to its members, the trust had originally planned to build the hospital first, and a mosque later, but was held back by the lack of money it is required to pay in fees and development charges.
Athar Hussain, the secretary and spokesperson of the trust, said the project will now be taken up in several small phases. "We have put the project on hold for now due to paucity of funds. Despite the difficulty, we will not shelf the project, but will change the strategy. We will divide the project into several small projects," Hussain told PTI.
"We will submit a new map of the mosque to the Ayodhya Development Authority. The mosque will take less money to build. It will be very easy to arrange it," he said.
According to Hussain, the mosque, to be built over 15,000 square feet, will cost Rs 8-10 crore and will be powered with solar panels.
Hussain said the mosque was supposed to come after the hospital, but the trust could not shore up Rs 300 crore needed to build it.
"Our effort was to build the hospital before the mosque, but it is an ambitious project involving Rs 300 crore. The land where the mosque is proposed to be built already has many mosques, so we had thought of building a charity hospital and community kitchen first," he said.
Zufar Farooqui, the chief trustee of the foundation and also the chairman of the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board, said the trust members will start seeking donations from the public next month onwards across the country. He said a meeting of the board will be held at the end of July to prepare a strategy to that end.
On November 9, 2019, the Supreme Court in its verdict in Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid case had ordered to give the disputed site for the construction of the temple and granted five acres of land in Ayodhya to the Muslims for the construction of a mosque.
The district administration had given Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board land in Dhannipur village in Sohawal tehsil, some 25 kilometers from the Ram Temple site, in compliance of the verdict.
The Indo-Islamic Cultural Foundation Trust was formed by the Waqf Board in July 2020 to oversee the construction of the mosque.
The Trust later decided to use the land to build a charity hospital, a community kitchen, a library, and a research institute, in addition to the mosque. The construction of the mosque in Dhannipur is yet to take off, even as Ram temple is in its final stages and is slated to be open to public by January next year.
The mosque project was earlier hamstrung by a detail in change of land use, which was sorted in March this year.