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05 Dec 2019 | 01:48 AM UTC

India: Civil society and political groups plan commemorative march in New Delhi December 6 /update 4

Civil society and political groups are planning a march in New Delhi on December 6 to commemorate the Babri Masjid demolition; heightened security presence and localized transportation disruptions expected

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transportation
IND

Event

Several civil society and political groups have called for a march in New Delhi on Friday, December 6, to demand justice for the 1992 demolition of Babri Masjid. Participants plan to gather at 14:00 (local time) at Mandi House and then march to Jantar Mantar.

District authorities in Uttar Pradesh have said that there will be a heightened police presence in Mathura and Aligarh districts from 00:01 (local time) on Thursday, December 5, through Friday, in anticipation of commemorative events. Police in Hyderabad (Telangana state) have ordered the restriction of large gatherings from 18:00 on Thursday through to 06:00 on Friday, following intelligence on potential disturbances.

Further associated protests by Muslim communities are possible in the coming hours and days in various parts of India. A heightened security presence is expected and localized transportation disruptions are anticipated near all protest sites and along all march routes. Violent clashes between religious communities cannot be ruled out.

Context

The Babri mosque is considered as an important religious site by both Muslim and Hindu communities, and is believed by the latter to be the birth place of Rama, a Hindu deity.

In 1992, violent clashes broke out between Hindu and Muslim communities across the country following the razing of Babri mosque by Hindu mobs. Around 2000 people were killed in related religious violence and riots. On November 9, 2019, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Hindu groups to build a temple on the land, and ordered the state government to give the Sunni Waqf Board a separate plot of land to build a mosque on.

Advice

Individuals in New Delhi, and in India more generally, are advised to monitor the situation, avoid public gatherings and discussing sensitive political topics in public, and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities.