Q+A - Politics stirs over Ayodhya mosque report

NEW DELHI Wed Nov 25, 2009 5:22pm IST

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Lal Krishna Advani attends a party meeting in Ahmedabad May 24, 2009. REUTERS/Amit Dave/Files

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Lal Krishna Advani attends a party meeting in Ahmedabad May 24, 2009.

Credit: Reuters/Amit Dave/Files

Related Topics

Rajalakshmi (C), 28, smiles after winning the Miss Wheelchair India beauty pageant in Mumbai November 26, 2014. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui

Miss Wheelchair India

Seven women from across India participated in the country's second wheelchair beauty pageant, which aims to open doors for the wheelchair-bound in modelling, film and television, according to organisers  Slideshow 

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - A government-backed inquiry has accused several of India's top opposition politicians of having a role in the destruction of an ancient mosque in 1992 that triggered some of the country's worst religious riots.

The report has sparked political protests from opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which finds itself in even more trouble as it struggles to emerge from internal feuding after an election defeat in May.

Here are some questions and answers about the report and its political fallout:

WHAT IS THE REPORT ABOUT?

The report, compiled by retired judge M.S. Liberhan, investigated the demolition of a 16th century mosque by Hindu mobs in Ayodhya on Dec. 6 1992. Hundreds were killed in rioting between Hindus and Muslims after the mosque's destruction, driving another wedge between the two communities and radicalising many Muslims.

The probe stretched for 17 years and indicted 68 people. It accused some of India's best-known politicians, including former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and current leader of opposition, Lal Krishna Advani, of doing little to stop the destruction despite knowing of plans to demolish the mosque.

WHAT IS THE CONTROVERSY OVER THE REPORT?

Excerpts from the report were published in a leading Indian daily this week, angering the BJP which accused the government of selectively leaking details to discredit opposition leaders.

The BJP has rejected the report and questioned its credibility over its naming of Vajpayee, who the BJP says is an acknowledged secularist and moderate. The BJP has demanded an inquiry into how the report was leaked to the media.

WHAT IS THE POLITICAL FALLOUT?

The controversy has led to protests by the BJP in the parliament, holding up any exchange of business in the house. While the report presents a challenge to the BJP leaders, it is also seen as providing the party with a chance to close ranks and emerge united from the infighting that had clouded its future.

The BJP is also expected to try and rally support through a nationwide programme of street meetings and protests.

IS THERE ANY IMPACT ON KEY FINANCIAL REFORM BILLS?

At least 62 bills, including ones on opening up pension funds to private players and giving equal voting rights to foreigners in private-sector banks, are to be discussed in the current parliamentary session.

But opposition disruption of proceedings means less time for discussions on these key bills and further delays in implementing much-awaited financial reforms.

(Editing by Krittivas Mukherjee and Paul Tait)

FILED UNDER:

Reuters Showcase

Cricketer Dies

Cricketer Dies

Australia batsman Phillip Hughes passes away after being struck on the head by a bouncer.  Full Article | Photos 

Online Grocery

Online Grocery

Online grocers come up trumps in India's e-commerce boom   Full Article 

Reuters Poll

Reuters Poll

GDP growth to slow to 5.1 pct, but no rate cut yet - Reuters Poll.  Full Article 

Jamini Roy

Jamini Roy

Photo Gallery – Bengali household name Jamini Roy’s paintings  Full Article 

Special Report

Special Report

How China's shadowy agency is working to absorb Taiwan.  Full Article 

Google in Europe

Google in Europe

Insight - Behind Google's Europe woes, American accents  Full Article 

Maverick Batsman

Maverick Batsman

Obituary - Australia's maverick batsman Phil Hughes.  Full Article | Related Story 

Ferguson Protests

Ferguson Protests

More than 400 arrested as Ferguson protests spread to other U.S. cities  Full Article 

Billboard History

Billboard History

One Direction makes Billboard history, knocks Swift from No. 1   Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage