LUCKNOW: Senior BJP leaders such as Lal Krishna Advani to be tried on the Supreme Court's orders for conspiracy to demolish Babri Masjid nearly 25 years ago did not incite the mob of kar sevaks (volunteers) to raze the structure, former BJP lawmaker Ram Vilas Vedanti has said. "He had no role in this incident... I brought it down and ensured that it went down," the lawmaker told the media on Friday.
- Vedanti said, 'I ensured that it (Ayodhya's Babri Masjid) went down'
- Supreme Court this week ordered LK Advani to face trial for conspiracy
- Vedanti is one of the 13 people accused of conspiracy by the CBI
Mr Vedanti said it was he, not Mr Advani or other senior BJP leaders, who provoked the thousands of volunteers who had gathered near the 16th century mosque at Ayodhya on 6 December 1992.
The Hindu religious leader, who was the BJP's lawmaker from Pratapgarh in Uttar Pradesh in 1998, said he, along with late Ashok Singhal and Mahant Avaidyanath of Gorakhnath Temple exhorted the Vishwa Hindu Parishad activists to ensure that the structure was pulled down.
Vedanti is one of the 13 people accused by the Central Bureau of Investigation in the conspiracy to commit the crime that this week's Supreme Court judgment says had "shaken the secular fabric of the Constitution of India".
On Wednesday, the top court ordered that BJP leaders Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Union Minister Uma Bharati and BJP MP Vinay Katiyar face trial for the conspiracy in a Lucknow special court.
"It was I who said 'Ek dhakka aur do, Babri Masjid tod do (Give it another push, demolish Babri Masjid)," he said, adding that Joshi, Advani and Vijayaraje Scindia were trying to calm the 'kar sevaks'.
Incidentally, the Liberhan Commission, which inquired into the demolition that led to communal riots in parts of the country, did point out that the three leaders made "feeble requests" to Kar Sevaks to come down. But it had raised questions on their intention, saying the "hidden intention of one and all" was to accomplish demolition and these icons of the Ram Janambhoomi could "just as easily" have prevented the demolition.
It had concluded that there was no doubt that the "second rung of the BJP was involved in the actual demolition". The second rung referred to BJP leaders such as Union Minister Uma Bharti and Governor Kalyan Singh.