Here's a timeline and history of the Babri Masjid demolition case
A special court will deliver the much-awaited judgment on Wednesday in the 1992 Babri Masjid demolition case in which BJP veterans LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi are among the accused.
In a significant judgment last year, the Supreme Court allotted the disputed site in Ayodhya for the construction of Ram temple.
Here's a brief timeline of events that lead up to this hearing:
1949: An idol of Lord Ram was secretly placed under the main dome of the mosque. Later, the government declared shut the gate as a precautionary measure.
1950: A suit was filed in the Faizabad court seeking rights to perform puja there. Another suit was filed to seeking continuation of the religious rituals and keeping idols in the structure.
1959: Nirmohi Akhara, a stakeholder in the dispute filed another suit, seeking direction from the court to get charge of the disputed site.
1984: Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) formed a committee under the leadership of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Lal Krishna Advani, with the sole aim of setting free the supposed birthplace of Lord Rama by constructing a temple in honour of the lord.
1991: BJP came into power in Uttar Pradesh.
1986: A district court ordered reopening of the site for Hindu worshippers after which the Uttar Pradesh government acquired land surrounding the site for devotees' convenience.
1992: On December 6, kar sevaks (activists) stormed the mosque compound and demolish the Babri mosque in an event that resulted in riots and communal tension across the country.
1993: Centre took over 67 acres of the land around the site and sought the top court’s opinion on whether a Hindu place of worship ever existed there before the mosque was built.
The same year, the Ayodhya Act 1993 was passed which also allowed a lone priest to worship in the makeshift temple built at the site.
2003: The Allahabad High Court asked the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to carry out an in-depth study and an excavation survey to ascertain what was under the site.
The ASI report indicated the presence of a 10th century temple under the site and human activity at the site dating back to the 13th century BC. Muslim groups immediately disputed the ASI findings pointing towards the lack of evidence. However, the report was upheld by the High Court.
2010: Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court ordered partition of the site occupied by the Babri Masjid into three equal parts, among Nirmohi Akhara, Ram Lalla (the deity) and the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board.
2011: The Supreme Court stayed orders of the High Court and ordered all sides to maintain the status quo.
2014: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) added construction of the temple in its 2014 General Election manifesto. The BJP also came to power at the Centre.
2015: The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) launched a nationwide campaign to collect stones for construction of the Ram temple. Later in the year, two trucks of stones arrived in Ayodhya. However, then Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav blocked the stones from getting closer to the site.
2017: The Supreme Court urged stakeholders to find an out-of-court settlement. Then Chief Justice JS Khehar also offered help to settle the fight amicably.
In a separate demolition case, the apex court ordered reopening of the criminal conspiracy charges against senior BJP leaders such as former deputy Prime Minister LK Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi and Uma Bharti.
2017: The Shia Waqf Board filed an application in the top court according to which the Ram Temple would be built in Ayodhya and a mosque would be built in Lucknow. However, the move is facing stiff opposition from the Sunni Waqf Board.
2019: Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi, on November 9, read out a unanimous judgment of the five-judge Constitutional bench of the Supreme Court of India (SC), in the Ayodhya land dispute case.
The apex court said that the disputed land at Ayodhya will be given to the party Ram Lalla Virajman, subject to certain conditions. It also ruled that an alternate plot of land in Ayodhya must be given to the Sunni Waqf Board to construct a mosque.September 2020: A special court here will deliver the judgment on Wednesday in the 1992 Babri Masjid demolition case in which BJP veterans LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi are among the accused.