THE CENTRE may soon move the Supreme Court to seek permission to provide a bulletproof cover around the idol of ‘Ram Lalla’ situated in the ‘sanctum sanctorum’ of disputed Ram Janm Bhoomi-Babri Masjid complex at Ayodhya.
The Union Home Ministry has informed the State Government that the Centre has issued directives to appropriate authorities to take necessary action to make the move, said a senior officer of State Home department here today. The State Government has received a letter from the Union Joint Secretary Home Coutino in this regard, he said.
A decision to put a bullet-proof cover around Ram Lalla’s idol had been taken by a high-powered committee on the basis of recommendations made for the security of three shrines — Ayodhya, Mathura and Kashi — and the Taj Mahal, immediately after the terrorist attack in Ayodhya on July 5, 2005.
As bulletproofing may mean setting a permanent structure of sorts and may have serious political overtones, the State Government had decided to put the ball in the Centre’s court.
According to sources, the State Government had contended that the Centre had acquired the disputed complex. Hence, the Centre should move the apex court. A question mark, however, still hangs on when the Centre would make the next move on the issue.
A sum of Rs 56 crore would be spent on further strengthening security of the three disputed shrines and the Taj Mahal. A sum of approximately Rs 1 crore had been allocated specifically for bulletproofing.
The Centre has already sent the sum to the Commissioner Faizabad division, who happens to be the Receiver for disputed Ram Janm Bhoomi-Babri Masjid Complex of Ayodhya in March 2006.
As per the proposal a bullet proof cover of 6 feet X 6 feet would be put around the idol of Ram Lalla in Ayodhya. A sum of nearly Rs 7 crore had been allocated to carry out Civil Works including to put up additional barricades and construct new watchtowers. While most other works were being carried out, the bulletproofing would require permission of apex court.
The State Government and the Receiver had therefore, requested the Centre early this year to move the apex court for permission for bulletproofing.
As per the security plan approved for Ayodhya, the security agencies propose to carry out digital mapping of Ram Janm Bhoomi area. The Sita Ki Rasoi area may be completely isolated. Out of five entry and exit points, three would be closed.
Besides, other proposals in the revised security plan include installation of CCTVs and new generators and shifting of generator room from where three of the five terrorists had reportedly entered the complex.