Hindu Vivek Kendra

It is with an extraordinary sense of fulfilment and satisfaction that this introductory preface to the 'White Paper on Ayodhya and the Temple movement' from the Bharatiya Janata Party is being written. The central concern of every page and line of this comprehensive and meticulous work is to document the full canvas of the Ayodhya movement and to give a true account of its course and direction; of its thrust and implications; of its supporters and detractors; and of the political and social changes the movement has decreed.

Key or Aid to the White Paper

1. The accompanying White Paper is a sincere effort to give a catalogue of the Ayodhya movement from its conception to its present stage; a true insight into its historic background and philosophic foundations. More specifically, it documents, again meticulously, how different governments, Prime Ministers, political parties and leaders have from time to time responded to the movement or have neglected it or issues that it made central to national discourse - and also how they changed overnight, ducked and dodged the core issues. This invaluable document also unravels the mysterious attitude of Prime Minister Shri P.V. Narasimha Rao to the Ayodhya issue particularly from July 1992, and more importantly graphs how the Prime Minister chose to act clever when this explosive issue demanded the greatest sincerity and candidness, how his conduct was the very reverse of what was required of him, and what his high office as the custodian of the nation implied. It also forthrightly documents how he saw in it only an opportunity to settle scores with, and do one up on, the dissidents in his party and government, and to outwit and turn tables on the Ayodhya movement leaders - and particularly how he could not rise above treating this great public issue as a purely political game with the BJP.

2. It also brings out how the courts confessed expressly and by implication that certain issues pertaining to Ayodhya were incapable of judicial determination; and yet how the Congress governments, particularly that of Shri Narasimha Rao, and the pseudo-secular parties and the self-styled leaders of the Masjid action groups, kept insisting on a judicial verdict, which they, as also the masses, knew would never come; and how despite its admission that some of the issues are doubtful of resolution in courts, the judiciary too was drawn into this Politically controversial issue repeatedly; and whenever the judiciary was drawn in whether in November 1989 or in November 1991, or in July 1992, or in November 1992, the effect of the judicial intervention, regardless of its intent, was to prevent the Temple from' coming up; although the judiciary was seized of the matter since 1950, and even condemned itself as far back as 1955 for not deciding it and directed that it be decided forthwith, yet it did not, even 37 years thereafter - and it is pending to this day at a stage earlier to trial. The White Paper also gives an instructive account of how, by dragging the judiciary into a mass movement, the Narasimha Rao government was merely using the high institution as a shield and as a weapon to make it coverture a controversy. It also establishes how the judiciary, acting on English jurisprudence with its bipartite legal system, could only treat the Ayodhya issue as a private property dispute; how all that was achieved by judicial cases on Ayodhya was delay of a kind unheard of in judicial history and non-decision that successfully prevented all other avenues for decision.

3. The BJP White Paper also stands out in complete contrast to the White Paper on Ayodhya put out by the Home Ministry of the Narasimha Rao Government. When the government's White Paper came out, the national press did not fail to notice the obvious fact that it had held back all details of the negotiations ceaselessly carried on by Shri Narsimha Rao. But it did not stop at that; it withheld far more, and suggested and stated more untruth than facts. The White Paper of the BJP, in contrast, discloses all that the government knew and ought to have said, but withheld, and more. In this sense, the BJP White Paper is also a White Paper on the government's White Paper - and a virtual audit of the government document. A brief summary of the contents of this White Paper follows. 

4. This comprehensive document which virtually replays the Ayodhya movement since its inception before its reader is divided into nine chapters, each chapter dealing with a specific aspect of the movement:

Chapter I gives the background of the Ayodhya movement, its philosophic basis and its importance as a movement of national renaissance.

Chapter II sets out the relentless struggle of the Hindus to repossess the Ramjanmabhoomi.

Chapter III deals with the Evidence and Dialogue on Ramjanmabhoomi.

Chapter IV gives a graphic description of the attitude of different governments, Prime Ministers political parties and leaders, to the Ayodhya issue.

Chapter V deals with the attitude of the Narasimha Rao Government in the first phase, and details the circumstances leading to the Kar Seva and its suspension in July 1992 - the conciliatory phase.

Chapter VI gives an account of the circumstances leading to the Kar Seva and demolition in December 1992 - the confrontationist phase.

Chapter VII deals with the aftermath of Ayodhya and its fall-out.

Chapter VIII analyses the official White Paper on Ayodhya issued by the Narasimha Rao Government.

Chapter IX surveys the role of law and the judiciary in the Ayodhya case.

Chapter X encapsules the Conclusions.