On Wednesday, close to 28 years after the Babri Masjid in Uttar Pradesh’s Ayodhya was destroyed, a special court in Lucknow will pronounce a verdict in a criminal case in which several senior BJP leaders such as LK Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi and Uma Bharti are on trial.
The mosque was brought down by kar sevaks on December 6, 1992 after a rath yatra led by then-BJP president Advani ended in Ayodhya. More than 2,000 people reportedly lost their lives in the riots that occurred after the demolition.
There are 32 surviving accused in the case, and a CBI court had on September 16 asked all the accused to be present in court.
PTI reported that it was not clear if Kalyan Singh and Uma Bharti will be present in court since they were both recovering from Covid-19 in separate hospitals.
Bharti, who was in Ayodhya on the day of the demolition, has repeatedly said that she did not regret the incident, which set the stage for the party’s meteoric rise in India.
She had told news channel AajTak, “I am happy to be an accused in the Ayodhya movement case. Being an accused in Ayodhya movement is not a taint. I consider this as a chandan tilak on forehead.”
The Narendra Modi government has asked all states to beef up security in communally sensitive areas, said reports,
The Hindu reported that the alert to all states claimed that Muslim organisations could resort to protests if the accused were acquitted and that the verdict could have an effect on “law and order situation” because of fringe elements from “both sides”.
Champat Rai, the general secretary of the trust in charge of constructing the Ram temple, is also among those accused.
PTI reported that CBI produced 351 witnesses and 600 documents...