Kalyan Singh, who was the Uttar Pradesh chief minister when the Babri mosque was razed, said he suspected a "political conspiracy" behind the Liberhan Commission of Inquiry that has severely indicted leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the demolition.
Kalyan Singh, who later quit the BJP and recently broke ranks with the Samajwadi Party, told reporters here that he was in no doubt that a grand Ram temple would be built on the site where the 16th century Babri mosque in Ayodhya was demolished on December 6, 1992.
"It will be a temple, a temple, a temple," he said, repeating the word thrice to lay emphasis.
"In the Liberhan Commission? There is a stench of politics," he said, adding that the report was "politically motivated".
He denied the charge levelled by Liberhan that there was a conspiracy to bring down the mosque.
"I say there was no deep conspiracy and there was no advance planning to break the structure. Dec 6 was an explosion."
The over 1,000-page report was placed in parliament on Tuesday. It has severely indicted top leaders of the BJP, to which Kalyan Singh then belonged, for the mosque razing that sparked off one of the worst outbreaks of communal violence in India.
At the same time, Kalyan Singh sought the cooperation of the Muslim community in the building of the Ram temple at the site in Ayodhya, about 700 km from here.
"There will be peace in the country (once the temple comes up)," he said. "This source of tension will end."
He said indefinitely postponing the construction of the Ram temple "will not benefit the Hindus or the Muslims or the country".
"The earlier the temple is built it will be good for the nation," he said. "The (Babri) mosque can never come up there."
Accused by the Liberhan Commission of inaction to prevent the destruction of the Babri mosque, he said he had told the police to use their canes or fire tear gas to disperse the hundreds of thousands of 'kar sevaks' who had gathered in Ayodhya on Dec 6, 1992.
"But I made it clear that there should be no firing on the kar sevaks," he said.
"If I had allowed firing, then thousands would have died and there would have been stampede and more would have died."
"The question before me was: who should I save? I prevented a massacre. The structure (mosque) went (in the process)."
"I have no regrets," he added, referring to the mosque destruction that sparked off one of the worst outbreaks of communal violence in the country.
"The Ram temple has to come up, the structure (mosque) had to go."