The Ayodhya dispute has been an emotive issue for decades and mired in a slew of legal suits involving Hindu and Muslim religious groups.
Following is the history, chronology and timeline of the Ram Janambhoomi- Babri Masjid issue till the green signal given by the Supreme Court to the Allahabad high court today to deliver its verdict on the Ayodhya title suit.
1528: A mosque is built on the site by Mughal emperor Babar which Hindus allege to be a birth place of Lord Ram and where a temple was there earlier.
1853: First recorded incidents of communal violence at the disputed site take place.
1859: British officials erect a fence to separate the places of worships, allowing the inner court to be used by Muslims and the outer court by Hindus.
1885: Mahant Raghubir Das files a suit seeking permission to build a canopy on Ram chabootra but his plea was rejected a year after by the Faizabad district court.
1949: Idol of Lord Ram surfaces inside mosque. Muslims claim that it was kept there by Hindus.
Muslims protest, and both parties file civil suits. The government proclaims the premises a disputed area and locks the gates.
January 18, 1950: The first title suit filed by Gopal Singh Visharad asking for the right to worship the idols installed at 'Asthan Janmabhoomi'. The court restrained the removal of idols and allowed the worship to continue.
April 24, 1950: The state of UP appeals against the injunction order.
1950: Ramchandra Paramhans files another suit, but withdraws later.
1959: Nirmohi Akhara enters the fray and files the third suit, seeks possession of the site, doing away with the court-appointed receiver. It claims itself to be the custodian of the spot at which Ram was supposedly born.
December 18, 1961: UP Sunni Central Board of Waqfs moves in to claim possession of the mosque and adjoining land.
1986: On a plea of Hari Shanker Dubey, a district judge directs Masjid gates to be unlocked to allow 'darshan'. Muslims set up Babri Masjid Action Committee.
1989: A fresh suit is filed by former VHP vice-president Deoki Nandan Agarwala in the name of Lord Ram for declaration of the title and possession in its favour at the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad HC.
October 23, 1989: All the four suits, pending before a Faizabad court transferred to a special bench of the HC.
1989: VHP lays foundations of a Ram temple on land adjacent to the disputed mosque.
1990: VHP volunteers partially damage the mosque. Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar tries to resolve the dispute through
negotiations, which fails the next year.
Dec 6, 1992: The disputed mosque is razed by Hindus in support of VHP, Shiv Sena and BJP, prompting nationwide communal riots which claimed more than 2,000 lives.
Dec 16, 1992: Justice Liberhan Commission set up to inquire into the demolition of disputed structure within six months.
July, 1996: Allahabad HC clubs all civil suits.
2002: The HC directs the Archaeological Survey of India to excavate the site to determine if a temple lay underneath.
April, 2002: Three high court judges begin hearing.
Jan, 2003: ASI begins a court-ordered survey to find out whether a temple to Lord Rama existed at the site.
Aug, 2003: The survey says there is evidence of a temple beneath the mosque. Muslims dispute the findings.
July, 2005: Suspected Islamic militants attack the disputed site. Security forces kill five people.
June, 2009: Liberhan commission investigating events leading up to the mosque demolition submits its report - 17 years after it began its inquiry and after getting extension for 48 times.
July 26, 2010: Lucknow bench of Allahabad high court reserves its order on the suits, fixes September 24 for pronouncement of verdict.
Sep 17, 2010: HC refuses to defer pronouncement of the verdict as pleaded by one of the parties RC Tripathi in the suit.
Sep 21, 2010 : Tripathi approaches SC against HC order. A bench of justices Altamas Kabir and AK Patnaik refuses to take up the case. Matter referred to another bench.
Sep 23, 2010 : Difference of opinion between twom justices RV Raveendran and HL Gokhale crops up on entertaining the petition. Court issues notices to the parties.
Sep 28, 2010 : SC dismisses Tripathi's plea for deferment of the verdict by the HC which now fixes September 30 for pronouncement of the judgment.