Babri Masjid (IAST: Bābarī Masjid; meaning Mosque of Babur) was a mosque in Ayodhya, India, at a site believed by many Hindus to be the birthplace of Hindu deity Rama. It has been a focus of dispute between the Hindu and Muslim communities since the 18th century. According to the mosque's inscriptions, it was built in 1528–29 (935 AH) by general Mir Baqi, on the orders of the Mughal emperor Babur. The mosque was attacked and demolished by a Hindu nationalist mob in 1992, which ignited communal violence across the Indian subcontinent.
|Location||Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh, India|
The mosque was located on a hill known as Ramkot ("Rama's fort"). According to Hindus, Baqi destroyed a pre-existing temple of Rama at the site. The existence of this temple is a matter of controversy. However, Archaeological Survey of India conducted an excavation of the disputed site on the orders of Supreme court. Various materials have been found during excavation which resemble the presence of Hindu structure beneath. Also, supreme court noted that the Babri Masjid was not built on a vacant land and the excavated underneath structure was not Islamic in nature.
Starting in the 19th century, there were several conflicts and court disputes between Hindus and Muslims over the mosque. In 1949, Hindu activists associated with the Hindu Mahasabha surreptitiously placed idols of Rama inside the mosque, after which the government locked the building to avoid further disputes. Court cases were filed by both Hindus and Muslims asking for access. The police locked the gates so that the public (Hindus as well as Muslims) could not enter.
On 6 December 1992, a large group of Hindu activists belonging to the Vishva Hindu Parishad and allied organisations demolished the mosque, triggering riots all over the Indian subcontinent, killing around 2,000 people.
In September 2010, the Allahabad High Court upheld the Hindu claim that the mosque was built on the spot believed to be Rama's birthplace and awarded the site of the central dome for the construction of a Rama temple. Muslims were also awarded one-third area of the site for the construction of a mosque. The decision was subsequently appealed by all parties to the Supreme Court, wherein a five judge bench heard a title suit from August to October 2019. On 9 November 2019, the Supreme Court quashed the lower court's judgement and ordered the entire site (2.77-acre land) to be handed over to a trust to build the Hindu temple. It also ordered the government to give an alternative five-acre plot to the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board to replace the Babri Masjid that was demolished in 1992. The government allotted a site in the village of Dhannipur, 11 miles (18 km) from Ayodhya and 19 miles (30 km) by road from the site of the original Babri Masjid. The construction of the mosque started on 26 January 2021.
The name "Babri Masjid" comes from the name of the Mughal emperor Babur, who is said to have ordered its construction. Before the 1940s, it was called Masjid-i Janmasthan ("mosque of the birthplace") including in official documents.
The rulers of the Delhi Sultanate and their successors, the Mughals, were great patrons of art and architecture and constructed many fine tombs, mosques and madrasas. These have a distinctive style which bears influences of "later Tughlaq" architecture. Mosques all over India were built in different styles; the most elegant styles developed in areas where indigenous art traditions were strong and local artisans were highly skilled. Thus regional or provincial styles of mosques grew out of local temple or domestic styles, which were conditioned in their turn by climate, terrain, materials, hence the enormous difference between the mosques of Bengal, Kashmir and Gujarat. The Babri Mosque followed the architectural school of Jaunpur Sultanate. When viewed from the west side, it resembled the Atala Masjid in Jaunpur.[full citation needed]
The architecture of the mosque is completely a replica of the mosques in the Delhi Sultanate. Babri was an important mosque of a distinct style, preserved mainly in architecture, developed after the Delhi Sultanate was established, seen also in the Babari Mosque in the southern suburb of the walled city of Gaur, and the Jamali Kamili Mosque built by Sher Shah Suri. This was the forerunner of the Mughal architecture style adopted by Akbar.
"A whisper from the Babri Masjid mihrab could be heard clearly at the other end, 200 feet [60 m] away and through the length and breadth of the central court" according to Graham Pickford, architect to Lord William Bentinck (1828–33). The mosque's acoustics were mentioned by him in his book Historic Structures of Oudhe where he says "for a 16th-century building the deployment and projection of voice from the pulpit is considerably advanced, the unique deployment of sound in this structure will astonish the visitor".
Modern architects have attributed this intriguing acoustic feature to a large recess in the wall of the mihrab and several recesses in the surrounding walls which functioned as resonators; this design helped everyone to hear the speaker at the mihrab. The sandstone used in building the Babri Mosque also had resonant qualities which contributed to the unique acoustics.
The Babri mosque's Tughluquid style integrated other design components and techniques, such as air cooling systems disguised as Islamic architectural elements like arches, vaults and domes. In the Babri Masjid a passive environmental control system comprised the high ceiling, domes, and six large grille windows. The system helped keep the interior cool by allowing natural ventilation as well as daylight.
The date of construction of the Babri Masjid is uncertain. The inscriptions on the Babri Masjid premises found in the 20th century state that the mosque was built in 935 AH (1528–29) by Mir Baqi in accordance with the wishes of Babur. However, these inscriptions appear to be of a more recent vintage.
There are no records of the mosque from this period. The Baburnama (Chronicles of Babur) does not mention either the mosque or the destruction of a temple. The Ramcharitamanas of Tulsidas (1574) and Ain-i Akbari of Abu'l-Fazl ibn Mubarak (1598) made no mention of a mosque either. William Finch, the English traveller who visited Ayodhya around 1611, wrote about the "ruins of the Ranichand [Ramachand] castle and houses" where Hindus believed the great God "took flesh upon him to see the tamasha of the world." He found pandas (Brahmin priests) in the ruins of the fort, recording the names of pilgrims, but there was no mention of a mosque. Thomas Herbert described in 1634 the "pretty old castle of Ranichand built by a Bannyan Pagod of that name" which he described as an antique monument that was "especially memorable". He also recorded the fact of Brahmins recording the names of pilgrims.
The earliest record of a mosque at the site traditionally believed by Hindus to be the birthplace of Rama comes from Jai Singh II (or "Sawai Jai Singh") – a Rajput noble in the Mughal court who purchased land and established a Jaisinghpura in the area surrounding the mosque in 1717 (as he had also done in several other Hindu religious places). The documents of Jai Singh preserved in the Kapad-Dwar collection in the City Palace Museum of Jaipur,[a] include a sketch map of the Babri Masjid site. The map shows an open court yard and a built structure with three temple spires (sikharas) resembling today's Babri Masjid with three domes. The courtyard is labelled janmasthan and shows a Ram chabutra. The central bay of the built structure is labelled chhathi, which also denotes birthplace.
The European Jesuit missionary Joseph Tiefenthaler, who lived and worked in India for 38 years (1743–1785) and wrote numerous works about India, visited Ayodhya in 1767. Johann Bernoulli translated his work Descriptio Indiae (in Latin) into French, published in 1788. According to this account, Aurangzeb (r. 1658–1707) had demolished the Ramkot fortress, including the house that was considered as the birthplace of Rama by Hindus. A mosque with three domes was constructed in its place. However, he also noted, "others say that it was constructed by 'Babor' [Babur]". The Hindus continued to offer prayers at a mud platform that marked the birthplace of Rama.[b] Tiefenthaler was well-versed in Persian and Sanskrit, having written a Sanskrit–Persian dictionary, and other works in Persian. Evidently he did not find an inscription on the walls of the mosque stating that it was constructed under Babur's orders. He "emphatically attributed it to Aurangzeb, and Babur's name is carried by a few persons", states writer Kishore Kunal.
Francis Buchanan-Hamilton (Buchanan) did a survey of the Gorakhpur Division in 1813–14 on behalf of the British East India Company. His report was never published but partly reused by Montgomery Martin later. Kishore Kunal examined the original report in the British Library archives. It states that the Hindus generally attributed destruction "to the furious zeal of Aurangzabe". However it said that the mosque at Ayodhya was ascertained to have been built by Babur by "an inscription on its walls". The said inscription in Persian was said to have been copied by a scribe and translated by a Maulvi friend of Buchanan. The translation however contained five pieces of text, including two inscriptions. The first inscription said that the mosque was constructed by Mir Baqi in the year 935 AH or 923 AH.[c] The second inscription narrated the genealogy of Aurangzeb.[d] In addition to the two inscriptions and their monograms (turghas), a fable concerning a dervish called Musha Ashiqan was also included. The translator doubted that the fable was part of the inscription but recorded that the scribe "positively says that the inscription was executed at the erection of this building". The translator also had a difficulty with the anagram for the date, because one of the words was missing, which would have resulted in a date of 923 AH rather than 935 AH. These incongruities and mismatches made no impression on Buchanan, who maintained that the mosque was built by Babur.
In 1838, British surveyor Montgomery Martin wrote that the pillars in the mosque were taken from a Hindu temple. A section of historians, such as R. S. Sharma, deny this, and state that such claims of temple demolition sprang up only after the 18th century.
In 1877, Syed Mohammad Asghar the Mutawalli (guardian) of the "Masjid Baburi at Janmasthan" filed a petition with the Commissioner of Faizabad asking him to restrain the Hindus that raised a chabutara on the spot regarded as the birthplace of Rama. In the petition, he stated that Babur had inscribed one word "Allah" above the door. The district judge and the sub-judge visited the mosque in the presence of all parties and their lawyers and confirmed this fact. No other inscriptions were recorded.
In 1889, archaeologist Anton Führer visited the mosque and found three inscriptions. One was a Quranic verse. The inscription XLI was Persian poetry in the metre Ramal, which stated that the mosque was erected by a noble 'Mir Khan' of Babur.[e] The inscription XLII was also Persian poetry in metre Ramal, and said that the mosque was founded in year 930 AH by a grandee of Babur, who was (comparable to) "another King of Turkey and China".[f] The year 930 AH corresponds to 1523, three years before Babur's conquest of Hindustan. Despite the apparent contradiction, Führer published the date of "A. H. 930 during the reign of Babar", in his book of 1891.
Writer Kishore Kunal states that all the inscriptions claimed were fake. They were affixed almost 285 years after the supposed construction of the mosque in 1528, and repeatedly replaced. His own assessment is that the mosque was built around 1660 by governor Fedai Khan of Aurangzeb, who demolished many temples in Ayodhya. Lal Das, who wrote Awadh-Vilasa in 1672 describes the janmasthan (Rama's birthplace) accurately but does not mention a temple at the site.
These developments were apparently known to local Muslims. In mid-nineteenth century, the Muslim activist Mirza Jan quoted from a book Sahifa-I-Chihil Nasaih Bahadur Shahi, which was said to have been written by a daughter of the emperor Bahadur Shah I (and granddaughter of Aurangzeb) in the early 18th century. The text mentions mosques having been constructed after demolishing the "temples of the idolatrous Hindus situated at Mathura, Banaras and Awadh etc." Hindus are said to have called these demolished temples in Awadh "Sita Rasoi" (Sita's kitchen) and "Hanuman's abode."  While there was no mention of Babur in this account, the Ayodhya mosque had been juxtaposed with those built by Aurangzeb at Mathura and Banaras.
The manuscript, Sahifa-I-Chihil Nasaih Bahadur Shahi, has not yet been found, and scholar Stephan Conermann has stated that Mirza Jan book, Hadiqa-yi shuhada, is not reliable.
Fable of Musa Ashiqan
According to an early 20th-century text by Maulvi Abdul Ghaffar and the surrounding historial sources examined by historian Harsh Narain,[g] the young Babur came from Kabul to Awadh (Ayodhya) in disguise, dressed as a Qalandar (Sufi ascetic), probably as part of a fact-finding mission. Here he met the Sufi saints Shah Jalal and Sayyid Musa Ashiqan and took a pledge in return for their blessings for conquering Hindustan. The pledge is not spelled out in the 1981 edition of Ghaffar's book. Lala Sita Ram, who had access to the older edition in 1932 wrote, "The faqirs answered that they would bless him if he promised to build a mosque after demolishing the Janmasthan temple. Babur accepted the faqirs' offer and returned to his homeland."
However, some historians have argued that it was built during the Delhi Sultanate period (13th–15th century), and may have been renovated during Babur's period. R. Nath has stated that, judging from the architecture of the mosque, it should be taken to have been built in the pre-Mughal period.
Apart from Hindus, Jains and Buddhists have also claimed the site. According to Jain Samata Vahini, the mosque was built over a 6th-century Jain temple. Similarly, Udit Raj's Buddha Education Foundation has claimed the mosque was built over a Buddhist shrine.
1880s temple construction attempts
In 1853, a group of armed Hindu ascetics occupied the Babri Masjid. Periodic violence erupted in the next two years, and the civil administration had to step in, refusing permission to build a temple or to use it as a place of worship. In 1855, after a Hindu-Muslim clash, a boundary wall was constructed to avoid further disputes. It divided the mosque premises into two courtyards; the Muslims offered prayers in the inner courtyard. The Hindus offered their prayers on a raised platform, known as "Ram Chabutara", in the outer courtyard.
In 1883, the Hindus launched an effort to construct a temple on the platform. After Muslim protests, the deputy commissioner prohibited any temple construction on 19 January 1885. On 27 January 1885, Raghubar Das, the Hindu mahant (priest) of the Ram Chabutara filed a civil suit before the Faizabad Sub-Judge. In response, the mutawalli (Muslim trustee) of the mosque argued that the entire land belonged to the mosque. On 24 December 1885, the Sub Judge Pandit Hari Kishan Singh dismissed the suit. On 18 March 1886, the District Judge F.E.A. Chamier also dismissed an appeal against the lower court judgment. He agreed that the mosque was built on the land considered sacred by the Hindus, but ordered maintenance of status quo, since it was "too late now to remedy the grievance". A subsequent appeal before the Judicial Commissioner W. Young was also dismissed on 1 November 1886.
On 27 March 1934, a Hindu–Muslim riot occurred in Ayodhya, triggered by cow slaughter in the nearby Shahjahanpur village. The walls around the Masjid and one of the domes of the Masjid were damaged during the riots. These were reconstructed by the British Indian government.
In 1936, the United Provinces government enacted U.P. Muslim Waqf Act for the better administration of waqf properties in the state. In accordance with this act, the Babri Masjid and its adjacent graveyard (Ganj-e-Saheedan Qabristan) were registered as Waqf no. 26 Faizabad with the UP Sunni Central Board of Waqfs. The Shias disputed the Sunni ownership of the mosque, claiming that the site belonged to them because Mir Baqi was a Shia. The Commissioner of Waqfs initiated an inquiry into the dispute. The inquiry concluded that the mosque belonged to the Sunnis, since it was commissioned by Babur, who was a Sunni. The concluding report was published in an official gazette dated 26 February 1944. In 1945, the Shia Central Board moved to court against this decision. On 23 March 1946, Judge S. A. Ahsan ruled in favour of the UP Sunni Central Board of Waqfs.
Placement of Hindu idols
In December 1949, the Hindu organisation Akhil Bharatiya Ramayana Mahasabha organised a non-stop nine-day recitation of the Ramacharitamanas just outside the mosque. At the end of this event, on the night of 22–23 December 1949, a group of 50–60 people entered the mosque and placed idols of Rama there. On the morning of 23 December, the event organisers asked Hindu devotees to come to the mosque for a darshan. As thousands of Hindus started visiting the place, the Government declared the mosque a disputed area and locked its gates.
Home Minister Vallabhbhai Patel and Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru directed the state's Chief Minister Govind Ballabh Pant and Uttar Pradesh Home Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri to have the idols removed from the mosque premises. Pant issued orders to remove the idols, but Faizabad's deputy commissioner K. K. Nayar feared that the Hindus would retaliate and pleaded inability to carry out the orders.
On 16 January 1950, Gopal Singh Visharad filed a civil suit in the Faizabad Court, asking that Hindus be allowed to worship Rama and Sita at the place. In 1959, the Nirmohi Akhara filed another lawsuit demanding possession of the mosque. On 18 December 1961, the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board also filed a lawsuit, demanding possession of the site and removal of idols from the mosque premises.
In April 1984, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) initiated a campaign to gather public support for Hindu access to the Babri Masjid and other structures that had been allegedly built over Hindu shrines. To raise public awareness, VHP planned nationwide rath yatras (chariot processions), the first of which took place in September–October 1984, from Sitamarhi to Ayodhya. The campaign was temporarily suspended after assassination of Indira Gandhi, but revived in from 25 places on 23 October 1985. On 25 January 1986, a 28-year-old local lawyer Umesh Chandra Pandey, appealed to a court to remove the restrictions on Hindu worship in the Babri Masjid premises. Subsequently, the Rajiv Gandhi government ordered the locks on the Babri Masjid gates to be removed. Earlier, the only Hindu ceremony permitted at the site was a Hindu priest performing an annual puja. After the ruling, all Hindus were given access to the site, and the mosque gained some function as a Hindu temple.
Communal tension in the region worsened when the VHP received permission to perform a shilanyas (stone-laying ceremony) at the disputed site before the national election in November 1989. A senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader, L K Advani, started a rath yatra, embarking on a 10,000 km journey starting from the south and heading towards Ayodhya. On 6 December 1992, BJP, VHP and RSS leaders gathered at the site to offer prayers and perform a symbolic kar seva. At noon, a teenage Kar Sevak (volunteer) was "vaulted" on to the dome and that signalled the breaking of the outer cordon. Soon after, a large number of kar sevaks demolished the mosque.
Communal riots between Hindus and Muslims occurred across India immediately following demolition of the mosque. Rioting in the immediate aftermath resulted in the deaths of an estimated 2,000 people. Six weeks of riots further erupted in Bombay, resulting in the deaths of an estimated 900 people.
Jihadist outfits like Indian Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Taiba have cited the demolition of Babri Masjid as justification for attacks directed against India. Gangster Dawood Ibrahim, wanted in India for his alleged ties to the 1993 Bombay bombings which killed 257 people, is believed to have been infuriated by the Babri Masjid's demolition.
The site has since become a magnet for pilgrims. According to The Economist, "Among its souvenir stalls, those doing the briskest trade are the ones playing videos on a loop of Hindu fundamentalists demolishing the mosque."
Riots in the aftermath of Babri Masjid's demolition extended to Bangladesh, where hundreds of shops, homes and temples of Hindus were destroyed. Widespread retaliatory attacks against scores of Hindu and Jain temples also took place across neighbouring Pakistan, with police not intervening. Reprisal attacks against Hindus in both countries, in turn, entered the discourse of right-wing Hindu nationalists – for example, in 1995, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) appealed to the United Nations to protect Hindus in Bangladesh and Pakistan and Kashmir. The impact of Babri Masjid's demolition and its repercussions negatively affects relations between India and Pakistan until the present day.
The Liberhan Commission set up by the Government to investigate the demolition later blamed 68 people including senior BJP, RSS and VHP leaders for the demolition. Among those criticised in the report were Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the party's chief LK Advani, and chief minister Kalyan Singh. A 2005 book by the former Intelligence Bureau (IB) Joint Director Maloy Krishna Dhar claimed the senior leaders of RSS, BJP, VHP and Bajrang Dal had planned the demolition 10 months in advance. He also suggested that the Indian National Congress leaders, including prime minister P V Narasimha Rao and home minister S B Chavan, had ignored warnings about the demolition for deriving political benefits.
In 2003, by the order of an Indian court, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) was asked to conduct a more in-depth study and an excavation to ascertain the type of structure that was beneath the rubble. The excavation was conducted from 12 March 2003 to 7 August 2003, resulting in 1360 discoveries. The ASI submitted its report to the Allahabad high court.
The summary of the ASI report indicated what appears to be the presence of a 10th-century shrine under the mosque. According to the ASI team, the human activity at the site dates back to the 13th century BC. The next few layers date back to the Shunga period (second-first century BC) and the Kushan period. During the early medieval period (11–12th century), a but short-lived huge structure of nearly 50 metres north–south orientation was constructed. On the remains of this structure, another massive structure was constructed: this structure had at least three structural phases and three successive floors attached with it. The report concluded that it was over the top of this construction that the disputed structure was constructed during the early 16th century.
Muslim groups immediately disputed the ASI findings. The Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust (Sahmat) criticised the report saying that it said that "presence of animal bones throughout as well as of the use of 'surkhi' and lime mortar" that was found by ASI are all characteristic of Muslim presence "that rule out the possibility of a Hindu temple having been there beneath the mosque." The report claimed otherwise on the basis of 'pillar bases' was contested since no pillars were found, and the alleged existence of 'pillar bases' has been debated by archaeologists. Syed Rabe Hasan Nadvi, chairman of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) alleged that ASI failed to mention any evidence of a temple in its interim reports and only revealed it in the final report which was submitted during a time of national tension, making the report highly suspect.
The Allahabad High Court, however, upheld the ASI's findings.
Title cases verdict
A land title case on the site was lodged in the Allahabad High Court, the verdicts of which was pronounced on 30 September 2010. In their verdict, the three judges of The Allahabad High Court ruled that the 2.77 acres (1.12 ha) of Ayodhya land be divided into three parts, with one-third going to the Ram Lalla or Infant Lord Rama represented by the Hindu Maha Sabha for the construction of the Ram temple, one-third going to the Islamic Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board and the remaining one-third going to Nirmohi Akhara, a Hindu religious denomination. While the three-judge bench was not unanimous that the disputed structure was constructed after demolition of a temple, it did agree that a temple or a temple structure predated the mosque at the same site. The excavations by the Archaeological Survey of India were heavily used as evidence by the court that the predating structure was a massive Hindu religious building.
The five judges Supreme Court bench heard the title dispute cases from August to October 2019. On 9 November 2019, the Supreme Court ordered the land to be handed over to a trust to build the Hindu temple. It also ordered the government to give an alternative five-acre plot to the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board to build a mosque, which the government allotted in Dhannipur, Ayodhya.
- Professor R. Nath, who has examined these records, concludes that Jai Singh had acquired the land of Rama Janmasthan in 1717. The ownership of the land was vested in the deity. The hereditary title of the ownership was recognised and enforced by the Mughal State from 1717. He also found a letter from a gumastha Trilokchand, dated 1723, stating that, while under the Muslim administration people had been prevented from taking a ritual bath in the Saryu river, the establishment of the Jaisinghpura has removed all impediments.
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, pp. xvi quotes from Tiefenthaler's Descriptio Indiae (c. 1772): "Emperor Aurangzeb got the fortress called Ramcot demolished and got a Muslim temple, with triple domes, constructed at the same place. Others say that it was constructed by 'Babor'. Fourteen black stone pillars of 5 span high, which had existed at the site of the fortress, are seen there. Twelve of these pillars now support the interior arcades of the mosque. Two (of these 12) are placed at the entrance of the cloister. The two others are part of the tomb of some 'Moor'.... On the left is seen a square box, raised five inches from the ground, with borders made of lime, with a length of more than 5 ells and a maximum width of about 4. The Hindus call it Bedi, i.e., 'the cradle'. The reason for this is that once upon a time, here was a house where Beschan [Vishnu] was born in the form of Ram. It is said that his three brothers too were born here. Aurangzeb or Babor, according to others, got this place razed in order to deny them the noble people, opportunity of practising their superstitions..."
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, Chapter 5: "By order of King Babur whose justice is a building reaching to the mansions of heaven, this alighting place of the angels was erected by Meer Baquee a nobleman impressed with the seal of happiness. This is lasting Charity in the year of its construction what declares in manifest "that good works are lasting." (The anagram "good works are lasting" represented the year 935. "From the Tughra: There is no God but God, and Mohammad is the Prophet of God. Say, O'Mohammad, that God is one, that God is holy, unbegetting and unbegotten, and that he hath no equal."
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, Chapter 5:"The victorious lord, Mooheyoo Din, Aulumgir, Badshah, the destroyer of infidels, the son of Shah Juhan, the son of Juhangeer Shah; the son of Ukbar Shah; the son of Humayoon Shah, the son of Babur Shah; the son Oomer Sheikh Shah; the son of Soolatan Uboo Saeed; the son of Soolatan Moohammad Shah; the son of Meeran Shah, the son of Shaib-i-Qiran Meer Tymoor." "From the Tughra: In the name of God, most merciful I testify that there is no God but God. He is one, and without equal. I also testify that Mohammad is his Servant and Prophet." "Upon the propitious date of this noble erection, by this weak slave Moohummud Funa Ullah."
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, p. 168:
- By the order of Babur, the king of the world;
- This firmament-like, lofty;
- Strong building was erected;
- By the auspicious noble Mir Khan;
- May ever remain such a foundation;
- And such a king of the world.
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, p. 169:
- In the name of God, the merciful, the clement.
- In the name of him who...; may God perpetually keep him in the world.
- Such a sovereign who is famous in the world and in person of delight for the world.
- In his presence one of the grandees who is another King of Turkey and China.
- Laid this religious foundation in the auspicious Hijra 930.
- O God! May always remain the crown, throne and life with the king.
- May Babar always pour the flowers of happiness; may remain successful.
- His counsellor and minister who is the founder of this fort masjid.
- This poetry, giving the date and eulogy, was written by the lazy writer and poor servant Fath-Allah-Ghori, composer.
- Sources cited by Harsh Narain:
- Karim, Maulvi Abdul (1885). Tarikh-i Parnia Madinatul Awliya [History of Parnia city of Sufis] (in Persian). Lucknow.
- Ghaffar, Maulvi Abdul (1981) [first published prior to 1932]. Gumgamashtah Halat-i Ajodhya [Forgotten Events of Ayodhya] (in Urdu). Lucknow: Nami Press.
- Sita Ram, Avadh-vasi Lala (1932). Ayodhya ka Itihasa [History of Ayodhya] (in Hindi). Allahabad.
- "Timeline: Ayodhya holy site crisis". BBC News. 6 December 2012.
- Hiltebeitel, Alf (2009), Rethinking India's Oral and Classical Epics: Draupadi among Rajputs, Muslims, and Dalits, University of Chicago Press, pp. 227–, ISBN 978-0-226-34055-5
- Udayakumar, S.P. (August 1997). "Historicizing Myth and Mythologizing History: The 'Ram Temple' Drama". Social Scientist. 25 (7): 11–26. doi:10.2307/3517601. JSTOR 3517601.
- PTI. "ASI report on excavation of Ayodhya site to be published as book: Minister". Economic Times. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
- Digital, Times Now. "Did you know seven evidences unearthed by ASI proved a temple existed at Ayodhya? Details here". Times Now. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
- Web desk, India Today. "Ayodhya verdict: The ASI findings Supreme Court spoke about in its judgment". India Today. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
- "Tracing The History of Babri Masjid". Outlook (Indian magazine). 1 December 2017.
- van der Veer, Ayodhya and Somnath (1992), pp. 98–99. sfnp error: no target: CITEREFvan_der_Veer,_Ayodhya_and_Somnath1992 (help)
- Fuller, Christopher John (2004), The Camphor Flame: Popular Hinduism and Society in India, Princeton University Press, p. 262, ISBN 0-691-12048-X
- Guha, Ramachandra (2007). India After Gandhi. MacMillan. pp. 582–598.
- Khalid, Haroon (14 November 2019). "How the Babri Masjid Demolition Upended Tenuous Inter-Religious Ties in Pakistan". The Wire. Retrieved 30 May 2020.
- "As a reaction to Babri Masjid demolition, What had happened in Pakistan and Bangladesh on 6 December, 1992". The Morning Chronicle. 6 December 2018. Retrieved 30 May 2020.
- The Three Way Divide, Outlook, 30 September 2010.
- "Ayodhya dispute: The complex legal history of India's holy site". BBC News. Retrieved 16 October 2019.
- "Supreme Court hearing ends in Ayodhya dispute; orders reserved". The Hindu Business Line. Press Trust of India. 16 October 2019. Retrieved 18 October 2019.
- "Ram Mandir verdict: Supreme Court verdict on Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid case". The Times of India. 9 November 2019. Retrieved 9 November 2019.
- "Where is Dhannipur? All about the site allotted to Sunni Waqf Board for a mosque". India Today. 5 February 2020. Retrieved 28 August 2020.
- Sharma, Ritwik (14 February 2020). "The mood in Dhannipur, a village in Ayodhya, chosen for the 'Babri Masjid'". Business Standard. Retrieved 28 August 2020.
- Razak, Hanie Abdul (19 January 2021). "Construction of Ayodhya mosque to begin with flag-hoisting on Republic Day". The Siasat Daily. Retrieved 26 January 2021.
- "Ayodhya Mosque Work Starts On Republic Day With Tricolour Hoisting". NDTV.com. Retrieved 26 January 2021.
- Flint, Colin (2005). The geography of war and peace. Oxford University Press. p. 165. ISBN 978-0-19-516208-0.
- Multiple sources state this fact:
- Griffiths, Gareth (2009), "Open Spaces, Contested Places: Writing and the Fundamentalist Inscription of Territory", in Axel Stähler; Klaus Stierstorfer (eds.), Writing Fundamentalism, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, p. 63, ISBN 978-1-4438-1189-7
- Jaishankar, K. (2009), "Communal Violence and Terrorism in India", in Thomas Albert Gilly; Yakov Gilinskiy; Vladimir Sergevnin (eds.), The Ethics of Terrorism: Innovative Approaches from an International Perspective (17 Lectures)., Charles C Thomas Publisher, p. 25, ISBN 978-0-398-07995-6,
Before the 1940s, the Mosque was called Masjid-i Janmasthan
- Narain, The Ayodhya Temple Mosque Dispute1993, pp. 19, 27, 104
- Asgharali Engineer, ed. (1990). Babri-Masjid Ramjanambhoomi controversy. Ajanta Publications. p. 37. ISBN 9788120202832.
- Harle, J.C., The Art and Architecture of the Indian Subcontinent, p. 421, 2nd edn. 1994, Yale University Press Pelican History of Art, ISBN 0300062176
- Shankar, Ravi (4 October 2010). "Memoirs of a Mosque". India Today. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
- Javaid, Azaan (9 December 2014l). "Young girls rally to safeguard secularism". Deccan Herald. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, Chapter 5.
- K. Elst (1995). "The Ayodhya Debate". In Gilbert Pollet (ed.). Indian Epic Values: Rāmāyaṇa and Its Impact. Peeters Publishers. pp. 28–29. ISBN 9789068317015.
- Narain, The Ayodhya Temple Mosque Dispute 1993, p. 17.
- Jain, Rama and Ayodhya 2013, pp. 165–166.
- Jain, Rama and Ayodhya 2013, p. 9, 120, 164.
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, p. xv.
- Jain, Rama and Ayodhya 2013, pp. 112–114.
- Jain, Rama and Ayodhya 2013, pp. 112–115.
- Robert Layton and Julian Thomas (2003). Destruction and Conservation of Cultural Property. Routledge. pp. 2–9. ISBN 9781134604982.
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, pp. 135–142.
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, p. 143.
- Kunal, Ayodhya Revisited 2016, p. xxvii.
- Narain, The Ayodhya Temple Mosque Dispute 1993, pp. 23–25.
- Robert Layton and Julian Thomas (2003). Destruction and Conservation of Cultural Property. Routledge. p. 8. ISBN 9781134604982.
- "Muslimische Quellen in der Ram Janmabhumi Mandir-Babri Masjid Debatte". Internationales Asienforum. 1994. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
- Ghaffar 1981, pp. 61–62 quoted in Narain, The Ayodhya Temple Mosque Dispute 1993, pp. 31–32
- Sita Ram 1932, p. 151 quoted in Narain, The Ayodhya Temple Mosque Dispute 1993, p. 33 and Allahabad High Court 2010, vol. 4, p. 281
- van der Veer, Peter (1987). "'God must be Liberated!' A Hindu Liberation Movement in Ayodhya". Modern Asian Studies. 21 (2): 283–301. doi:10.1017/s0026749x00013810. JSTOR 312648.
- van der Veer, Peter (1989). Gods on Earth: The Management of Religious Experience and Identity in a North Indian Pilgrimage Centre. Oxford University Press. pp. 20–21. ISBN 0485195100.
- K. Jaishankar (2009). "Communal Violence and Terrorism in India: Issues and Introspections". In Yakov Gilinskiy; Thomas Albert Gilly; Vladimir Sergevnin (eds.). The Ethics of Terrorism. Charles C Thomas. pp. 25–26. ISBN 9780398079956.
- "Jain body jumps into Ayodhya dispute, claims disputed site". The Indian Express. 9 March 2003. Retrieved 20 June 2012.
- Nitish K Singh (16 January 2011). "Buddhist body lays claim to the disputed Ayodhya site". Sunday Guardian.
- Chatterji, Roma (2014), Wording the World: Veena Das and Scenes of Inheritance, Fordham University Press, p. 406, ISBN 978-0-8232-6187-1: "British administrative records show that the dispute began around 1853, when armed Hindu ascetics occupied the birthplace."
- Sarvepalli Gopal (1993). Anatomy of a Confrontation: Ayodhya and the Rise of Communal Politics in India. Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 64–77. ISBN 9781856490504.
- *Jaffrelot, Christophe (1996), The Hindu Nationalist Movement and Indian Politics, C. Hurst & Co. Publishers, p. 417, ISBN 978-1850653011
- Elst, Koenraad (23 August 2004). "What If Rajiv Hadn't Unlocked Babri Masjid?". Outlook (Indian magazine). Retrieved 20 June 2012.
- "Timeline: Ayodhya holy site crisis". BBC News. 30 September 2010.
- Engineer, Asghar Ali. "The Mumbai riots in historic context". The Hindu.
- Punwani, Jyoti (4 February 2014). "Why there's no noise about the Mumbai riots". Rediff.com.
- Raman, B. (9 December 2010). "The Latest 'Indian Mujahideen Mail'". Outlook (Indian magazine). Retrieved 20 June 2012.
- Sinha, Amitabh (14 September 2008). "Blast a revenge for Babri: mail". The Indian Express. Retrieved 20 June 2012.
- Gordon, Sandy; Gordon, A. D. D. (2014). India's Rise as an Asian Power: Nation, Neighborhood, and Region. Georgetown University Press. pp. 54–58. ISBN 9781626160743. Retrieved 27 May 2017.
- "The unfinished Partition of India and Pakistan". The Economist. 17 August 2017. Retrieved 19 August 2017.
- "Refworld | Chronology for Hindus in Bangladesh". United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. 16 October 1993. Archived from the original on 18 October 2012. Retrieved 20 June 2012.
- "Pakistanis Attack 30 Hindu Temples". The New York Times. 8 December 1992.
In Lahore, Muslims used a bulldozer, hammers and hands to demolish the Jain Mandar temple near Punjab University. The police did not intervene.
- "Report: Sequence of events on December 6". Ndtv.com. Retrieved 20 June 2012.
- Uproar over India mosque report: Inquiry into Babri mosque's demolition in 1992 indicts opposition BJP leaders Al-Jazeera English – 24 November 2009
- Babri Masjid demolition was planned 10 months in advance – PTI, Outlook, 30 January 2005.
- Ratnagar, Shereen (April 2004). "Archaeology at the Heart of a Political Confrontation: The Case of Ayodhya" (PDF). Current Anthropology. 45 (2): 239–259. doi:10.1086/381044. JSTOR 10.1086/381044. S2CID 149773944.
- "ASI submits report on Ayodhya excavation". Rediff.com. PTI. 22 August 2003. Retrieved 20 June 2012.
- Prasannan, R. (7 September 2003). "Ayodhya: Layers of truth". The Week (Indian magazine). Archived from the original on 23 March 2005.
- Suryamurthy, R (26 August 2003). "ASI findings may not resolve title dispute". The Tribune.
- "Proof of temple found at Ayodhya: ASI report". Rediff.com. 25 August 2003. Retrieved 20 June 2012.
- "Ayodhya verdict yet another blow to secularism: Sahmat". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 3 October 2010. Archived from the original on 6 October 2010. Retrieved 1 November 2010.
- Muralidharan, Sukumar (September 2003). "Ayodhya: Not the last word yet". Frontline.
- Garg, Abhinav (9 October 2010). "How Allahabad HC exposed 'experts' espousing Masjid cause". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 4 November 2012. Retrieved 1 November 2010.
- Ram Janm Bhumi Babri Masjid: Gist of Judgments Archived 28 September 2011 at the Wayback Machine
- "Issues For Briefing" (PDF). Allahabad High Court. Retrieved 11 June 2012.
- Allahabad High Court (30 August 2010). "Decision of Hon'ble Special Full Bench hearing Ayodhya Matters". Archived from the original on 27 August 2014. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Jain, Meenakshi (2013). Rama and Ayodhya. New Delhi: Aryan Books. ISBN 978-8173054518.
- Kunal, Kishore (2016), Ayodhya Revisited, Prabhat Prakashan, pp. 335–, ISBN 978-81-8430-357-5
- Narain, Harsh (1993). The Ayodhya Temple Mosque Dispute: Focus on Muslim Sources. Delhi: Penman Publishers.
- Ram Sharan Sharma. Communal History and Rama's Ayodhya, People's Publishing House (PPH), 2nd Revised Edition, September 1999, Delhi. Translated into Bengali, Hindi, Kannada, Tamil, Telugu and Urdu. Two versions in Bengali.
- Sita Ram Goel: Hindu Temples - What Happened to Them, Voice of India, Delhi 1991. 1 2