No law and order issues, protests or celebrations were reported in Pune city, Pimpri-Chinchwad and in the district after the Supreme Court delivered its much-awaited verdict in the Ayodhya case on Saturday.
The city remained calm and no untoward incident was reported. It was business as usual for shops and business establishments, while road and rail traffic remained unaffected.
A large police force was deployed in both Pune city, where 500 police officers and 8,500 police personnel were on duty, and in Pimpri-Chinchwad. Pune City Police Commissioner K Venkatesham and Joint Commissioner Ravindra Shisave monitored the situation closely through the day.
“The situation in the city was peaceful. Security arrangements were well-planned. We had interacted with community leaders and people from different sections in the last few days to maintain peace after the Ayodhya verdict. Citizens have responded well to the appeals made by the police…The security arrangements will continue for Eid-e-Milad festival on Sunday,” said Shisave.
Pimpri-Chinchwad Police Commissioner Sandeep Bishnoi made rounds of the city to ensure that the situation remained peaceful after the verdict. Sandip Patil, superintendent of Pune Rural Police, said, “The situation was peaceful in my area. No untoward incident was reported.”
Earlier, police personnel on leave were called back on duty in view of the Ayodhya verdict. Repeated appeals were made by the police to avoid celebrations or any activity that will hurt religious sentiments of any community. Police had also appealed people not to post anything objectionable on social media platforms.
Meanwhile, political parties, activists, advocates, intellectuals and social and voluntary organisations in the city said they respected the court’s verdict and urged local residents to maintain peace.
NCP spokesperson Ankush Kakade said, “The long-pending Ayodhya case has finally found closure. Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas and the All India Muslim Personal Law should whole-heartedly accept the verdict delivered by the highest court of the land.
Kakade added, “The NCP wants to thank all Pune residents, political parties and social and voluntary organisations for ensuring peace in the city after the Ayodhya verdict. Pune has set a very good example of communal harmony and peace.”
Congress city president Ramesh Bagwe said, “The Supreme Court verdict should be respected by one and all. It is a historic verdict and has resolved a 135-year old controversial case. Leaders from both Hindu and Muslim communities should appeal for peace and communal harmony across the country.”
Urging local residents to maintain peace and harmony, Pune Mayor Mukta Tilak said, “I welcome the SC verdict. It is historic and satisfactory. It will increase the faith of the people in our democracy and the courts. It will help bring stability in the country.”
BJP Pimpri-Chinchwad unit chief Laxman Jagtap said, “We should all respect the apex court’s verdict and give peace the top priority. The issue has been settled now and the government will be able to divert all its energies towards all-round progress of the country.”
Human rights activist and advocate Aseem Sarode said,”The Supreme Court has tried its level best to give justice to both parties… The SC observed that installation of idols in 1949 inside the then Babri Masjid was illegal. It’s observation that demolition of Babri Masjid was illegal shows the anguish of the court while deciding the case”.
“The series of observations in the verdict indicates that it doesn’t provide closure of the issue… I think somewhere, to meet the ends of justice, the SC has used its prudence by balancing the demands and disposed of the case. There is scope to analyse the verdict on legal grounds,” he added.
Sanjay Nahar of NGO Sarhad said, “Finally, the verdict has come and it was long-awaited. Because of the delay, the social climate in the country was getting affected. Be it during polls or social events, the issue used to surface and create unnecessary bitterness. It was also taking away a lot of time and energy of the government of the day. The government will now be able to devote more time towards the basic problems faced by citizens of the country.”
Activist Maruti Bhapkar said, “The SC judgment is highly praiseworthy. It has struck a very good balance. The Ram temple should be built and at the same time, the masjid should also be built. For building the masjid, Hindu brothers should lend their whole-hearted support.”
Bhapkar said the politics being played in the name of Ram will now come to an end. “The government should focus its attention on ensuring development of the country,” he said.
Ramesh Shinde, national spokesperson of the Hindu Janajagruti Samiti, said, “We had immense faith in the judiciary. After several generations, justice has finally been served…”.
“We also thank the honourable Supreme Court for delivering timely justice. However, it is rather unfortunate to see that at a time when everyone in the country is appealing for peace, the security of the panel of judges had to be heightened,” he added.
Santosh Shinde, district president of Sambhaji Brigade’s Pune unit, said, “Today, Ram has won and so has Rahim. This is also a victory of the Indian Constitution… All disputes in the name of religion have ended. Till today, vested interests played politics by provoking the common man, farmers, women and educated jobless youths in the name of religion, which was unfortunate. From now on, development should be the topmost priority in the country.