New Delhi, Sept. 28: The Congress, which had hailed the Supreme Court stay on the Ayodhya verdict last week, has welcomed the clearance given to the high court to deliver the judgment.
Party general secretary Digvijay Singh has explained the apparent contradiction in the partys stand by asserting that the Congress always welcomes all judicial verdicts but his response hides a deep sense of disquiet among senior leaders.
The impression Congress leaders often reinforced in private is that they would not mind a postponement, and an early verdict was not going to serve any immediate national purpose.
Today, too, many leaders expressed disappointment, pointing out that the Congress would be the obvious loser if a polarised atmosphere set in.
But some leaders expressed helplessness, saying that the Supreme Court could not have under the law stopped the high court from delivering the verdict.
Some other leaders are still nursing hopes that the verdict would get delayed but the official stand is clear: We welcome the verdict.
Digvijay said: We always said there should be a negotiated settlement or a judicial verdict.
Asked about allegations that the central government and the Congress were trying to get the verdict delayed, he said: This is baseless. The petitioner Tripathi was a kar sevak and his lawyer Mukul Rohatgi has been a lawyer for the BJP; he is a representative of Narendra Modi in the Supreme Court in many cases. He never fights Congress cases.
Other Congress leaders, who agreed the party would like the matter to come to the Supreme Court immediately after the high court verdict, said the Sangh parivar or others should not get any opportunity to play politics after the judgment.
The party leaders expressed the hope that all sides would exercise restraint and understand that the judicial process would go to the next step.
Digvijay, however, launched an offensive on the Sangh parivar, saying that the groups past record did not inspire confidence. The communal forces will try to evoke frenzy, we should be alert. This is a sensitive issue but I only hope the people will see through the BJPs game of fooling them for political gains.
Asked about L.K. Advanis Somnath temple visit, Digvijay said: His motive is suspect. Why did he say the temple was still an issue when he did nothing for the temple when he was deputy Prime Minister?
The Congress has stepped up the attack on the BJP because of feedback that the minority community was turning angry after word spread that the ruling party wanted to delay the verdict.
Many Muslim organisations had complained against the Centre when this impression gained ground. Now the Congress wants to address the concern by targeting the BJP.