Ahead of the Ramjanambhoomi- Babri Masjid court verdict, the Bharatiya Janata Party top brass held a meeting with its state in-charges and co-incharges to discuss the future course of action on the issue as well as the strategy for taking on the Congress in the states.
Senior BJP leader L K Advani, in his address, said the Ayodhya verdict is expected on September 24 and the party should be prepared for it.
Advani will be at the Somnath Temple near Veraval in Saurashtra region of Gujarat on September 25, the day he had started his historic rathyatra in 1990. "He said he will give his message from there on September 25 on the issue," party spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said.
Party sources said the leaders have been asked to "practice restraint" whichever way the verdict goes. The party cadre has also been asked to "await the verdict".
Both Advani and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat have already indicated that the option of going to the Supreme Court is open and likely to be adopted.
Though the Ayodhya issue was not discussed at length during today's meeting, BJP leaders are likely to hold a brainstorming session with RSS and VHP leaders soon after the verdict is out this Friday.
Some party insiders said a verdict against the BJP stand of the land belonging to the temple trust may be politically more beneficial, especially in the cow belt, as it may whip up passions in party's favour as it happened in the late 1980s after Advani's rathyatra.
The party is also closely watching the moves of Mulayam Singh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party and Mayawati's BSP. Yadav is likely to woo the minority votebank on this issue.
BJP Chief Nitin Gadkari chaired the inaugural session in which he emphasised on the party's need to reach out to all sections of the society to increase its votebank."The strategy for strengthening the party in the states and sending out the message of the BJP central unit to them was discussed," Hussain said.
During his address, Advani told state in-charges that BJP, and its erstwhile avataar Jan Sangh, never believed in political untouchablity and all were welcome to the party-fold. It was reiterated that BJP victory in the recent by-elections in Gujarat and Karnataka had shown that Congress was losing ground in states.