Many BJP leaders, including union ministers, have welcomed the decision of the special CBI court on Wednesday (September 30) acquitting all the 32 accused, including party stalwarts Lal Krishna Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi and Uma Bharti, in the 28-year-old Babri Masjid demolition case. The Shiv Sena, which was part of the BJP-ruled NDA but has quit the alliance, also hailed the verdict.
The court said the CBI, which investigated the case, had failed to provide sufficient evidence to prove the charges against the accused.
Defence minister Rajnath Singh welcomed the decision. “Justice has been done even though delayed,” he said in his tweet.
Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath also said he welcomed the verdict. “Satyamev Jayate (Truth alone triumphs),” he said in his tweet. “The then Congress government acted with political bias and implicated saints, BJP leaders, VHP and social workers in false cases,” he said. “It should now apologise to the people for its conspiracy,” he said.
Civil aviation Hardeep Singh Puri said the judgment puts an end to “false narratives and conspiracy theories”. He also congratulated Advani and all the others acquitted in the case.
BJP leader and Bihar deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi said the December 6, 1992, incident was spontaneous and there was no conspiracy. “I was witness to the entire incident of 6th Dec. It was all spontaneous, (there was) no conspiracy. I was conducting the meeting from dais, I was surprised when some Kar Sewaks climbed Babri,” he tweeted. “Advaniji was unhappy,” he said, before concluding by saying, “Satyamev Jayate.”
BJP leader Ram Madhav said the verdict was long overdue. “Truth triumphs. CBI court’s acquittal in (the) Babri conspiracy case was long overdue. A malicious case against some of the most respected leaders of our nation has fallen aside finally after 3 decades,” he tweeted.
While welcoming the verdict, the Shiv Sena, former alliance partner of the BJP, said it is an event that should now be forgotten. “I and my party, the Shiv Sena, welcome the judgment and congratulate Advaniji, Murli Manoharji, Uma Bhartiji and the people who have been acquitted in the case,” Sena spokesperson and editor of the party’s mouthpiece Saamna Sanjay Raut said.
“The verdict that said the demolition wasn’t a conspiracy was as expected. We must forget that episode,” he said. “If the Babri Masjid hadn’t been demolished, we wouldn’t have seen any Bhoomipujan for Ram Mandir,” he said.
Some of the leaders who were acquitted were also relieved. “Justice has been done. The court agreed that we did no wrong,” said former BJP MP Mahant Ram Vilas Vedanti, one of the accused.
“Truth has prevailed,” said former MP of the Shiv Sena Satish Pradhan, 80, who was another accused.
AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi called the verdict a “sad day in the history of Indian judiciary”.
Meanwhile, Iqbal Ansari, the petitioner in the case, said it is “good” that the case is over. “Let’s all live in peace. Let there be no fresh trouble of this nature. Hindu and Muslim have always lived in peace in Ayodhya,” he said while talking to mediapersons.