Hindu and Muslim leaders in Ayodhya on Wednesday gave a mixed reaction to the resignation of Bharatiya Janata Party president Lal Kishenchand Advani following the controversy over his comments on Mohammed Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan.
Jagatguru Ramanujacharya Purshottamacharya, a senior Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader and member of the Kendriya Margdarshak Mandal, expressed satisfaction over Advani's decision and said the latter's 'description of Jinnah as secular was damaging to the cause of Hindus and the Ram temple movement'.
All India Akhara Parishad president Gyan Das said it was a 'political game' of Advani, seemingly aimed at reviving the 'sagging' position of the BJP in the country following its rout in the last general election.
He apprehended that the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh-VHP combine may be a party in Advani's 'move'.
Faizabad-Ayodhya Babri Masjid Action Committee convenor Mohammed Yunus Siddiqui said the comments about Jinnah may have been Advani's 'personal opinion' and similar views had been expressed by other leaders in the past.
He said that the Sangh Parivar, which has raised a hue and cry over the issue, had made an 'unimpressive contribution' during the freedom struggle.
Siddiqui claimed the Hindu Mahasabha had also supported the two-nation theory and suggested that all these historical facts should be taken in proper perspective.
Hilal Committee convenor Mohammed Khaliq Ahmed said that after a long time Advani had spoken the 'truth', otherwise his 'shifting stand' on the Ayodhya dispute had created a 'lot of confusion'.