1 Oct : A day after the Ayodhya court verdict was pronounced, the nation remained calm on Friday with no untoward incident reported from any part, as tens of thousands of security personnel kept a hawk’s vigil.
Massive Security drill in sensitive areas across the country will continue for a few more days to thwart any law and order problem with authorities saying it will not be relaxed for now.
Life was normal at the twin cities of Faizabad and Ayodhya–epicentre of the Ramjanambhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute–in Uttar Pradesh with people carrying on with their routine chores amid reports there was a spirit of bonhomie among all sections of people.
In Faizabad’s alleyways, people were in a jubilant mood, with most saying there was no reason for discord now.
No vehicle is being allowed entry into the temple town without extensive checking as patrolling has picked up, police said.
“Situation is totally normal, but there will be no let up in the security,” Senior Superintendent of Police Faizabad R K S Rathore said.
In the capital, Delhi Police kept a tight vigil, especially in the Walled city, to ensure that no untoward incident took place.
All the police stations in the city were on high alert and the security arrangements made for the Commonwealth Games came in handy in preventing any incidents arising out of the verdict on the Ayodhya title suit pronounced by the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court on Thursday.
Amid a thick security cover with over 2.5 lakh security personnel keeping a strict vigil, the situation in Mumbai and elsewhere in Maharashtra was peaceful.
Mumbai also remained calm amidst security personnel armed with guns, lathis and riot control equipment on the streets.
“No untoward incident was reported in the state. It remained absolutely calm. The security arrangements would continue for a couple of days,” said K P Raghuvanshi, Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order).
Mumbai Deputy Police Commissioner (Operations) Rajkumar Vhatkar said prohibitory orders in Mumbai will continue till 3rd October.
In Uttar Pradesh, a three-tier security vigil ( land, air and river) continued to be maintained in and around 18 districts that have been identified as “hyper-sensitive” — Lucknow, Faizabad, Gonda, Balrampur, Bahraich, Gorakhpur, Mau, Azamgarh, Varanasi, Allahabad, Kanpur, Agra, Aligarh, Bareilly, Moradabad, Saharanpur, Muzaffarnagar and Meerut.
West Bengal, where the security was intensified, was peaceful with no untoward incident reported from anywhere in the state.
Security was tight in Kolkata where 18 of the 43 police stations areas were declared sensitive with radio flying squads on constant patrol.
Chidambaram satisfied over people’s response on verdict
Meanwhile, expressing satisfaction over the “respectful and dignified” response of people to the Ayodhya verdict, Union Home Minister P Chidambaram said the Centre has no role in the issue except to maintain status quo and ensure law and order across the country.
He told a press conference that it was a fair assumption that the verdict of the Lucknow Bench of Allahabad High Court on the dispute will go to Supreme Court which may pass an interim order and take it up for hearing.
“There is no role for the Centre now. The judges have given a stay and ordered a status quo (on the situation as obtaining) before the verdict. The judgement is not operational as of now.
“The judgement is indeed an important document. But it is not operational. It is a fair assumption that appeals may be lodged (in Supreme Court). It is a fair assumption that the Supreme Court will pass interim orders. Therefore, there is no need now to comment on the judgement which is not operational and status quo as decreed in a Supreme Court order in 1994 will be maintained,” he said.
When asked a number of questions on the subject, he appealed to the media and television channels not to “over interpret” the judgement and devote extraordinary time and space to it.
On the law and order situation, he said the country has been extremely peaceful and there have been no incidents reported from anywhere.
“We are pleased and satisfied with the response of people which has been respectful and dignified,” he said quoting the words of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who made an appeal to the people to maintain calm in the wake of the verdict.