Watch : The day vajpayee apologized for demolition of Babri Masjid

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Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee speaks during a news conference in the eastern Indian university town of Shantiniketan, 150 km (93 miles) northwest of Calcutta April 2, 2004. Vajpayee, who is the university's chancellor, visited its museum, from where the 1913 Nobel prize for literature was stolen last week. REUTERS/Jayanta Shaw JS/TW

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and former Prime Minister of India, Atal Bihari Vajpayee gave an interview to NDTV, following the 1992 demolition of the historic Babri Masjid in Ayodhya on 6 December by kar sevaks — a group that commits itself to serving the Hindu religious cause.

Vajpayee Speaking to journalist Prannoy Roy, expressed his emotions by apologised for the debacle at the site of the mosque, calling it “unfortunate” and admitting that it “should not have happened”.

Vajpayee said “We tried to prevent it, but we could not succeed,” he says, “We are sorry for that.” Subsequently Roy asked the reason for the failure occurred he replied it was “because a section of kar sevaks went out of control” and violated the assurance of not doing any damage to the disputed structure.

The video which was been released 25 years latter was worth revisiting because this day is significant for several reasons as the Supreme Court, in a landmark judgement, restored the Central Bureau of Investigation’s (CBI) appeal to put three BJP leaders — LK Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi and Uma Bharti — on trial for criminal conspiracy in the case and adding to it the video is also a chilling reminder of the twists and turns in the positions adopted by leaders of India’s saffron outfits in the course of over two decades.

For instance, Vajpayee was alleged to be one of the instigators of the riot that broke out on the fateful day. The instigating speech delivered a day before the incident, he had made a strong case to reclaim the site to host singing of bhajans and kirtans by followers of the Hindu faith.

He said, “By doing kar seva in Ayodhya we will not be disrespecting any court order, “by doing kar seva we will be respecting and obeying the Supreme Court order.” If he admitted the court’s injunction against any construction, he sought other means to justify interfering with the site, namely by organising communal singing, prayers and yagnas, for which, Vajpayee conceded, a “platform” had to be built at least. “There were sharp stones that came out, no one can sit there,” the ground has to be levelled, it has to be made fit for sitting.” And he got a chilling provocation, amid cheers from the crowd,

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