UP CM Adityanath stands by BJP leaders charged in Babri Masjid demolition case
Adityanath arrived in the state government-run VVIP guest house early in the morning to receive the leaders. Soon, several cabinet ministers, MLAs, and MPs made a beeline for the guest house.Updated: May 30, 2017 23:50 IST
In what appeared to be a message to his supporters about his government’s commitment to the construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya, chief minister Yogi Adityanath on Tuesday gave a warm welcome to BJP leaders accused in the Babri Masjid demolition case. (Highlights)
Adityanath arrived in the state government-run VVIP guest house early in the morning to receive the leaders. Soon, several cabinet ministers, MLAs, and MPs made a beeline for the guest house.
The BJP workers raised slogans in support of the temple outside the venue and security personnel had a tough time controlling the crowd. The leaders accused in the Babri demolition case started arriving at the guest house at 10am.They were escorted to the room in which the chief minister was seated.
Adityanath stood at the main door of the government building to receive LK Advani, Murli Manor Joshi and Uma Bharti.
Adityanath was not discouraged from accompanying Advani and Joshi despite their reduced present position within the BJP.
AK Mishra, a political observer, said, “Yogi’s gesture will boost the morale of the BJP cadre who are confident about construction of the temple now that the party has formed a majority government.”
Yogi has been active in the Ram Janmabhoomi movement since the early 1990s when his guru Mahanth Avaidyanath was president of Ram Janmabhoomi Trust. Advani had attended the meetings organised by Adityanath in Gorakhpur and supported the temple movement.
Talking to reporters, saffron fold members Vinay Katiyar, Ram Vilas Vedanti and Sadhvi Ritambhara said, “We have not committed a crime nor hatched a conspiracy to demolition the masjid.”
At 12.05pm, when the BJP leaders started leaving the guesthouse for the court, Adityanath walked along with Advani and Joshi to a vehicle. He left the guest house after the BJP leaders’ fleet moved towards the court.
Jawahar Rajput, BJP MLA from Garautha in Jhansi, said, “Yogi Adityanath’s initiative to welcome senior BJP leaders has given a shot in the arm to the government’s commitment to the building of the temple.”
Political rivals, however, were quick to launch an attack on the chief minister.
“The BJP leaders are not heroes but have been accused of demolishing a religious structure. The act of the CM will give fillip to the morale of communal elements,” BSP state president Ramachal Rajbhar.
First Published: May 30, 2017 23:49 IST