All Schools Closed In UP, Security Stepped Up Ahead Of Ayodhya Verdict

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Centre issued alert to all states, union territories about posting adequate security at sensitive places.

New Delhi:

All schools, colleges and other educational institutions in Uttar Pradesh will remain closed from tomorrow until Monday in view of the Supreme Court's judgment in the Ayodhya temple-mosque title suit case on Saturday. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has appealed to the people of the state not to pay attention to rumours and maintain peace and harmony, a government release said.

"The Chief Minister has said the state administration is committed to maintaining law and order in the state and ensuring safety of its people. Strong action will taken against those who will try to disturb law and order," a release by the UP government said.

The Supreme Court will deliver its landmark verdict on the Ayodhya dispute at 10:30 am on Saturday, ending decades of uncertainty on the issue.

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The five-judge constitution bench headed by CJI Ranjan Gogoi had reserved the judgement on October 16 after a marathon hearing of 40 days. Earlier today, he had met top Uttar Pradesh officials to discuss law-and-order arrangements in this regard.

The other members of the bench are Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer.

The dispute involves 2.77 acres of land in Ayodhya, which right-wing activists believe was the birthplace of Lord Ram. A 16th Century mosque – said to have been built by the Mughal Emperor Babur — which stood at the spot was razed in December 1992 by right-wing activists. In the days that followed, 2,000 people died in riots across the country.

In its 2010 verdict, the Allahabad High Court had divided the disputed land among the three main litigants–the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla. Fourteen appeals were filed against the judgement.

The Supreme Court had conducted day-to-day hearings after a meditation panel failed to arrive at a decision in August this year. The court has reserved its verdict in the case.

The centre on Thursday issued an alert to all states and union territories about posting adequate security at sensitive places. It has sent 4000 paramilitary personnel to Uttar Pradesh in view of the upcoming judgment.

Around 12,000 police personnel have been deployed in the state to maintain law and order. The Ayodhya police have launched a mobile application by which they will monitor the ground situation with help from 16,000 volunteers.

Multi-layered security arrangements have been put in place in the temple town of Ayodhya with drones being used to monitor the situation.

"Adequate forces have been provided to Ayodhya and all sensitive districts of the state in good measure. The force has been sufficiently strengthened in terms of CAPF and PAC companies," Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) PV Ramasastry was quoted by news agency PTI as saying.

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