Senior BJP leaders charged with criminal conspiracy in Babri Masjid demolition case
Senior BJP leaders LK Advani, Union Minister Uma Bharti and Murli Manohar Joshi were charged with criminal conspiracy by a Lucknow court in the 1992 Babri mosque demolition case.
They deny making inflammatory speeches that encouraged Hindu mobs to tear down the mosque at Ayodhya.
Uma Bharti, the Water Resources Minister, told reporters: “I don’t consider myself an accused…There was no conspiracy, it was an open movement like it happened against the Emergency.”
The BJP backed its leaders. “We are sure that our leaders are innocent and will come out unscathed,” said Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu.
Hindus claim the mosque is the birthplace of one of their most revered deities, Lord Ram, and that it was built after the destruction of a Hindu temple by a Muslim invader in the 16th Century.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has always said the destruction of the mosque was a planned event.