National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM) is shocked and dismayed at the verdict of the CBI Special Court in acquitting all 32 persons accused of being responsible for the demolition of Babri masjid on December 6, 1992. For reasons best known to it, the CBI led a weak prosecution based upon defective evidence, even though the Liberhan Commission after its detailed investigation (1992-2009) pointed to the involvement of senior RSS and BJP leaders, including L K Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi and Uma Bharti. It is indeed sad commentary for our democracy that active participants in a movement such as this often say one thing inside Court and the exact opposite outside it and yet go scot-free. The Judgement running in to 2,300 pages then goes at length to say that there was no active conspiracy, it’s a mockery of the rule of law.
The verdict does nothing to remedy the illegality of the demolition, which was recognized by the Supreme Court in its Ayodhya Verdict on November 9, 2019, but on the other hand has encouraged claims for demolition of other mosques, leading inevitably to increasing discord, hate and violence in society. Further, the verdict trivializes Supreme Court’s comment that the Babri masjid demolition was “an egregious violation of rule of law”.
Prima facie, it appears that the Prosecution not only failed to do its job but also willfully worked in favour of pleasing its political masters, since on record, in front of Liberhan Commission, Uma Bharti, one of the co-accused had taken responsibility for her role in the demolition of the mosque. There is enough evidence visual and written in public domain from the times where their speeches, actions and everything has been recorded. Photographs of leading lights who were leading the Ramjanmabhoomi movement and were on stage near the site of the demolition celebrating the fall of the mosque are a case in point. All right thinking citizens are therefore dismayed at the decision that they had no role in the demolition of the Babri Masjid. NAPM condemns this decision of the CBI court and demands that this be challenged in the High court.
The verdict has shocked everyone, though given the state of affairs and continued miscarriage of justice in recent times, it has not come as a surprise to many. This completely falls in the current pattern where students activists, professors, lawyers, journalists, human rights activists and critics of the regime are being arrested on false charges, and conspiracies are being established on WhatsApp chats and social media posts, case being Bhima Koregaon Conspiracy and Delhi Riots Conspiracy. The judicial system has always been seen as the last recourse of common people in the face of a rapacious executive and a complicit legislature, which are destroying the social fabric of our nation. Unfortunately, judiciary is abdicating its responsibility.
We urge that the Supreme Court takes suo moto note of this verdict and brings the perpetrators to justice. The demolition of Babri mosque was a body blow to the secular fabric of the nation and a criminal act. And it is with deep sorrow that we note that the Ram Mandir will be built on the back of demolition, violence and miscarriage of justice.
We the People, who have faith in the Constitution of India, are being constantly failed by its three pillars, and all public servants. In the face of failing democracy, we still believe and trust that the Judiciary at all levels will yet rise above the political pressures that it faces, and display its independence. We expect it to stand tall with courage and belief in the power of truth, to uphold justice without fear or favour, and honour their Constitutional oath to serve the People of India.
Medha Patkar, Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) and National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM); Dr. Sunilam, Adv. Aradhna Bhargava, Kisan Sangharsh Samiti; Rajkumar Sinha, Chutka Parmaanu Virodhi Sangharsh Samiti, NAPM, Madhya Pradesh;
Aruna Roy, Nikhil Dey, Shankar Singh, Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan (MKSS), National Campaign for People’s Right to Information; Kavita Srivastava, People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL); Kailash Meena NAPM Rajasthan;
Prafulla Samantara, Lok Shakti Abhiyan; Lingraj Azad, Samajwadi Jan Parishad & Niyamgiri Suraksha Samiti, Manorama, Posco Pratirodh Sangram Samiti; Lingaraj Pradhan, Satya banchor, Anant, Kalyan Anand, Arun Jena, Trilochan Punji, Lakshimipriya Mohanty and Balakrishna Sand, Manas Patnaik, NAPM Odisha;
Sandeep Pandey (Socialist Party of India); Richa Singh & Rambeti (Sangatin Kisaan Mazdoor Sangathan, Sitapur); Rajeev Yadav & Masihuddin bhai (Rihai Manch, Lucknow & Azamgadh); Arundhati Dhuru & Zainab Khatun (Mahila Yuva Adhikar Manch, Lucknow), Suresh Rathaur (MNREGA Mazdoor Union, Varanasi); Arvind Murti & Altamas Ansari (Inquilabi Kamgaar Union, Mau), Jagriti Rahi (Vision Sansthan, Varanasi); Satish Singh (Sarvodayi Vikas Samiti, Varanasi); Nakul Singh Sawney (Chal Chitra Abhiyan, Muzaffarnagar); NAPM Uttar Pradesh
- Chennaiah,Andhra Pradesh Vyavasaya Vruthidarula Union-APVVU, Ramakrishnam Raju,United Forum for RTI and NAPM, Chakri (Samalochana), Balu Gadi, Bapji Juvvala, NAPM Andhra Pradesh;
Jeevan Kumar & Syed Bilal (Human Rights Forum), P. Shankar (Dalit Bahujan Front), Vissa Kiran Kumar & Kondal (Rythu Swarajya Vedika), Ravi Kanneganti (Rythu JAC), Ashalatha (MAKAAM), Krishna (Telangana Vidyavantula Vedika-TVV), M. Venkatayya (Telangana Vyavasaya Vruttidarula Union-TVVU), Meera Sanghamitra, Rajesh Serupally, NAPM Telangana;
Sister Celia, Domestic Workers Union; Maj Gen (Retd) S.G.Vombatkere, NAPM, Nawaz, Dwiji, Nalini, Madhu Bhushan and Mamatha Yajaman, NAPM Karnataka
Gabriele Dietrich, Penn Urimay Iyakkam, Madurai; Geetha Ramakrishnan, Unorganised Sector Workers Federation; Suthanthiran, Suthanthiran, Lenin & Arul Doss, NAPM Tamilnadu;
Vilayodi Venugopal, CR Neelakandan, Prof. Kusumam Joseph, Sharath Cheloor, Vijayaraghavan Cheliya, Majeendran, Magline, NAPM, Kerala;
Dayamani Barla, Aadivasi-Moolnivasi Astivtva Raksha Samiti; Basant Hetamsaria, Aloka Kujur, Dr. Leo A. Singh, Afzal Anish, Sushma Biruli, Durga Nayak, Jipal Murmu, Priti Ranjan Dash, Ashok Verma, NAPM Jharkhand;
Anand Mazgaonkar, Swati Desai, Krishnakant, Parth, Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti; Nita Mahadev, Mudita, Lok Samiti; Dev Desai, Mujahid Nafees, Ramesh Tadvi, Aziz Minat and Bharat Jambucha, NAPM Gujarat;
Vimal Bhai, Matu Jan sangathan; Jabar Singh, Uma, NAPM, Uttarakhand;
Manshi Asher and Himshi Singh, Himdhara, NAPM Himachal Pradesh
Eric Pinto, Abhijeet, Tania Devaiah and Francesca, NAPM Goa
Gautam Bandopadhyay, Nadi Ghati Morcha; Kaladas Dahariya, RELAA, Alok Shukla, Shalini Gera, NAPM Chhattisgarh;
Samar Bagchi, Amitava Mitra, Binayak Sen, Sujato Bhadro, Pradip Chatterjee, Pasarul Alam, Amitava Mitra, Tapas Das, Tahomina Mandal, Pabitra Mandal, Kazi Md. Sherif, Biswajit Basak, Ayesha Khatun, Rupak Mukherjee, Milan Das, Asit Roy, Mita Bhatta, Yasin, Matiur Rahman, Baiwajit Basa, NAPM West Bengal;
Suniti SR, Sanjay M G, Suhas Kolhekar, Prasad Bagwe, Mukta Srivastava, Yuvraj Gatkal, Geetanjali Chavan, Bilal Khan, Jameela, Ghar Bachao Ghar Banao Andolan; Chetan Salve, Narmada Bachao Andolan, Pervin Jehangir, NAPM Maharashtra;
Faisal Khan, Khudai Khidmatgar, J S Walia, NAPM Haryana;
Guruwant Singh, Narbinder Singh, NAPM Punjab;
Kamayani Swami, Ashish Ranjan, Jan Jagran Shakti Sangathan; Mahendra Yadav, Kosi Navnirman Manch; Sister Dorothy, Aashray Abhiyan, NAPM Bihar;
Rajendra Ravi, NAPM; Bhupender Singh Rawat, Jan Sangharsh Vahini; Anjali Bharadwaj and Amrita Johri, Satark Nagrik Sangathan; Sanjeev Kumar, Dalit Adivasi Shakti Adhikar Manch; Anita Kapoor, Delhi Shahri Mahila Kaamgaar Union; Sunita Rani, National Domestic Workers Union; Nanhu Prasad, National Cyclist Union; Madhuresh Kumar, Priya Pillai, Aryaman Jain, Divyansh Khurana, Evita Das; Anil TV, Delhi Solidarity Group, MJ Vijayan (PIPFPD)