04/05/2014, 00.00
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India, Babri Masjid demolition "planned by Hindu party"

by Nirmala Carvalho
Reported by Cobrapost, an online agency that specializes in investigative journalism and confirmed to AsiaNews by the activist Ram Puniyani. The destruction of the mosque (6 December 1992) did not take place as a "violent consequence" of a meeting among some Hindu radicals, but was ordered by the leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP nationalists) .

Mumbai (AsiaNews) - The destruction of the Babri Masjid (mosque of Babar) in 1992 was the result of a plan hatched by the leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP, the Hindu nationalist party), and was not the consequence of a spontaneous reaction by a mob of fundamentalists. This was stated by the Cobrapost, Indian website specializing in investigative journalism and famous for it's under coverage reporting, which broke the news yesterday.

According to theeditor , the demolition was planned by LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi, the leading figures of the BJP , and the then chief minister of Uttar Pradesh Kalyan Singh was aware of it. The investigation revealed that the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and the Shiv Sena - violent radical Hindu groups, affiliated to the BJP - have openly spoken of a "conspiracy".

The Cobrapost revelations were criticized by the BJP as an attempt to tarnish the credibility of the party on the eve of the 2014 general elections in, which begin on April 7 .

However Ram Puniyani a well-known social activist of the All India Secular Forum and the Centre for Study and Secularism, confirmed the online agency's thesis to AsiaNews: "In the past, many analysts and experts had suggested the idea of a targeted and predetermined operation with the aim of destroying the Babri Masjid and the secular fabric of India".

He explains that "planning the attacks in order to hide the truth is the style of the Hindu fundamentalist forces, even the ' minor ' cases of violence against religious minorities. They know that their electoral strength can be reinforced through these acts, which cause divisions in society.  It is a line that they have always followed".

The story of the Babri Masjid is emblematic of the Hindu nationalists' political extremism. Built in 1528 in Ayodhya - which Indian tradition considers the birthplace of Ram (incarnation of the god Vishnu) - it has been the center of disputes between Muslims and Hindus for centuries. The latter claimed that the mosque was built on the ruins of an ancient Hindu temple and tried several times to have it pulled down.

Called to Ayodhya for a symbolic ceremony to launch the construction of Hindu temple, December 6, 1992 Sangh Parivar activists set upon the mosque, tearing down the three domes in less than three hours. This all took place under either the police or deployed paramilitary forces, intervening. Then overnight a small Hindu temple was built on the ruins of the mosque.

In 2010, the Allahabad High Court ruled that the area be divided into three parts between Hindus and Muslims.

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See also
No to more violence over Ayodhya’s Babri Masjid, Hindu leader says
BJP leaders blamed for the destruction of the Ayodhya mosque
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