December 1992 destruction of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya. Ayodha is an ancient city in northern India and an important pilgrimage site. A mosque was built there in 1528 by the Mughal conqueror Babur, supposedly on the site of a demolished temple at Rama's birthplace. The city became the focus of the Hindu campaign to restore the temple after Indian independence (1947). After Hindu militants succeeded in destroying Babri Masjid, Hindu-Muslim riots followed throughout north India and Bombay. The incident helped popularize the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party.