HomePoliticsBJP found an ally in Bal Thackeray in Babri Masjid Case

BJP found an ally in Bal Thackeray in Babri Masjid Case

The first was Devendra Fadnavis, the BJP’s deputy chief minister, who abruptly appeared with Eknath Shinde, the Shiv Sena leader, during the latter’s elaborate Ayodhya tour. The unanticipated verbal battle over the destruction of the Babri Masjid has now begun.

Shinde’s travel to Ayodhya was his first leadership role as the official Sena leader outside of Maharashtra. Fadnavis was a last-minute addition, albeit a few smaller BJP leaders were supposed to go with him even as a train full of Sena faction supporters arrived in the temple town.

More importantly, though, it is the political rivalry over the Babri demolition, which occurred just 48 hours after the pilgrimage to Ayodhya, that highlights the fight over Hindutva spoils between the allies (now divided into three groups, including the Uddhav Thackeray-led Sena).

The Shiv Sena had no part to play in the mosque’s demolition, according to senior BJP politician and Minister of Higher and Technical Education Chandrakant Patil, who is not known for tempering his comments. Bal Thackeray was at his home in Matoshree, Mumbai, on the morning of December 6, 1992 when kar sevaks brought Babri to the ground in front of BJP leaders like L K Advani. Despite the fact that certain Shiv Sainiks, including Satish Pradhan, were known to be in Ayodhya, the party’s attention at the time was nearly solely on problems in Mumbai, not Maharashtra.

Sunder Singh Bhandari, a prominent BJP politician, later said: “The demolition was by Shiv Sainiks.” This was in response to inquiries about how the mosque was destroyed despite a significant security presence and the BJP state government’s involvement.

The Shiv Sena gained a new, militant Hindutva character as a result of Thackeray’s claim, which came at a time when the BJP was trying to distance itself from the Babri demolition but not too much. The subsequent communal riots in Mumbai that occurred in December 1992 and January 1993 as a result of the demolition served to further solidify this. The riots claimed the lives of over 900 individuals, and Sainiks were charged of actively instigating them.

In March 1993, following a series of apparent retaliatory bombings in Mumbai, the Sena seized the chance to fill the void left by the Marathi Manoos’ lack of a party that catered to Hindu worries.

In spite of this, the BJP and Shiv Sena remained strong allies at the federal and state levels for the course of the following 25 years. Additionally, the BJP accepted the Sena’s position as senior partner in Maharashtra. That changed with the emergence of the BJP following the election of Narendra Modi, and the resulting tension eventually led to their breakup during the 2019 Assembly elections. As a result, the Sena split, with the Uddhav faction joining the NCP and Congress and the Shinde faction finding support in the BJP.

Both Uddhav and Shinde are now eager to portray themselves as no less a Hindutva leader as a result, the former because of his new enterprise and the latter because of his breakup with the Thackeray family

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