‘Ready to be Hanged, But Won’t Seek Bail’: Uma Bharti to Nadda Ahead of Babri Masjid Demolition Verdict

BJP leader Uma Bharti is currently admitted at AIIMS in Rishikesh after testing positive for Covid-19. (File photo/PTI)

BJP leader Uma Bharti is currently admitted at AIIMS in Rishikesh after testing positive for Covid-19. (File photo/PTI)

In the letter written to BJP president JP Nadda on September 26, Uma Bharti said she was “proud” of her participation in the “Ayodhya movement” and added that seeking bail would “tarnish the dignity” of her role.

Facing verdict in the Babri Masjid demolition case on Wednesday, BJP leader Uma Bharti has said in a letter to party president JP Nadda that she would prefer to be “hanged” rather than seek bail.

A report in The Print said Bharti wrote the letter to Nadda on September 26, the day she was dropped from the list of national office-bearers of the party in a dramatic reshuffle.

Expressing pride in her participation in the “Ayodhya movement”, Bharti said seeking bail would “tarnish the dignity” of her role. “I do not know what the Ayodhya judgement will be on 30 September but I will not seek bail… I am proud of my participation in the Ayodhya movement. I have always said that even if I have to hang for being part of the Ayodhya movement, then that’s acceptable to me… Taking the bail will tarnish the dignity of my participation in the movement.”

Bharti is currently admitted at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Rishikesh after testing positive for Covid-19. Her condition is said to be stable. While Bharti will not be present in court for the hearing, it is not yet clear whether she would appear via video conferencing.

Apart from Bharti, BJP veterans LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi are among the accused in the in the 1992 Babri Masjid demolition case. Other accused include former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh, Vinay Katiyar and Sadhvi Rithambara.

The trial under the serious criminal conspiracy charges commenced against them after having been dropped by the trial court in 2001. The verdict was upheld by the Allahabad High Court in 2010, but the apex court ordered restoration of the conspiracy charge against them on April 19, 2017. The top court ordered daily hearing in the high profile case and directed the special judge to conclude it in two years.

The conspiracy charge is in addition to the existing charges against them for promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion for which they are already facing trial. The other charges against them include indulging in "deliberate and malicious" acts intended to outrage religious feelings, uttering statements leading to public mischief, rioting and unlawful assembly.

The CBI argued that the accused conspired and instigated 'kar sevaks' to demolish the 16th century mosque. But the accused pleaded innocence maintaining that there is no evidence to prove their guilt and claimed they were implicated by the then Congress government at the Centre as a political vendetta.

The Babri Masjid was demolished in December 1992 by "kar sevaks" who claimed that the mosque in Ayodhya was built on the site of an ancient Ram temple.

In a landmark judgment last year, the Supreme Court allotted the disputed site in Ayodhya for construction of a Ram temple, while calling the demolition of the mosque a violation of the rule of law. An alternative five-acre site was marked in the city for building a mosque.

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