Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

Advani, Joshi, others to face criminal charges in Babri Masjid Demolition case

Advani, Joshi, others to face criminal charges in Babri Masjid Demolition case

The Supreme Court ordered proceedings should be completed in two years to deliver a final verdict.

The bench had earlier reserved the order on April 6 after the CBI and other petitioners had sought the restoration of conspiracy charge against the senior Bharatiya Janata Party and Vishwa Hindu Parishad leaders.

The BJP leaders, who are now facing more serious charges, will be tried in Lucknow where a separate case is being heard in which 20 people have been accused of the actual demolition of the mosque. Another case is against Advani and other BJP leaders who were at Ram Katha Kunj in Ayodhya on December 6, 1992, when the Babri mosque was demolished.

Three senior figures within India's ruling party will be prosecuted for alleged criminal conspiracy over the 1992 demolition of a mosque in northern India, the country's Supreme Court ruled Wednesday.

Restoring the conspiracy charge, a bench of Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose and Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman also transferred their trial from Rae Bareli to Lucknow. Kalyan Singh, who was the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh when the mosque was demolished, is now the governor of Rajasthan and can not be prosecuted while in office.

At the time of the mosque's 1992 destruction, Singh was the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh state, where Ayodhya is located.

The top court said the trial will proceed on a day-to-day basis and on no grounds it will be adjourned. Three senior members of India's ruling Hindu nationalist party including a government minister should face trial over the demolition of a mosque a quarter of a century ago, the Supreme Court ruled today.

Now, the country's Supreme Court has made a decision to revive criminal conspiracy charges against four veteran ruling party politicians over the destruction of a mosque 25 years ago.

Asked whether today's apex court ruling will impact selection of candidates for the posts of president and vice president, Jaitley merely said "it is hypothetical".

But in February 2001, the Allahabad High Court, on revision petitions filed by the accused, found that the Lucknow court had no jurisdiction over the Rae Bareli case.

The demolition of Babri Masjid was carried out following a high charged movement for the construction Ram temple was led by Advani. "We leave it to his wisdom how he reacts to this and whether a chargesheeted minister should remain in his cabinet or not", Tiwari said.

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