Advani, Joshi to be charged today for Babri demolition

In response to the notices issued earlier by the court in Lucknow, the five accused surrendered on last Saturday.

Published: 26th May 2017 02:26 AM  |   Last Updated: 26th May 2017 07:42 AM   |  A+A-

Senior BJP leader L K Advani. | PTI File Photo

Express News Service

LUCKNOW: The special CBI court deferred framing of charges against six accused including RV Vedanti, Nritya Gopal Das and four others in the Babri Masjid demolition case to May 30 as only one of them appeared before it on Thursday. All the accused were asked by the court to appear on May 30 for final framing of charges.
 
However, charges against six other saffron leaders for conspiring the demolition — LK Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Cabinet minister Uma Bharti , MP Vinay Katiyar, Sadhvi Ritambhara and Vishnu Hari Dalmiya — would be framed today.
 
Out of the six accused — Nritya Gopal Das, Ram Vilas Vendanti, Baikunth Lal Sharma, Champat Rai Bansal, Mahant Dharam Das and Dr Satish Pradhan —who had to be present before the special CBI court, only Pradhan turned up on Thursday while other five sought exemption. However, the court denied exemption and directed them to appear before it on May 30.
 
Meanwhile, in response to the notices issued earlier by the court in Lucknow, the five accused surrendered on last Saturday. Pradhan could not appear in the court then owing to illness. Later on the same day, all the five were granted bail on a personal bond of Rs 20,000 each. Dr Pradhan, however, appeared before the court on a later date and obtained bail.
 
The court had, on Wednesday, said that charges would be framed against all six on Thursday but only Pradhan appeared before it. Pradhan pleaded the court to frame the charges against him as it was difficult for him to walk as he was ill. But CBI judge SK Yadav said that as all the six accused were not present collectively, it was not possible to frame charges against only one. The court directed all the accused to remain present on May 30 as no further adjournment would be allowed.
 
After the demolition of the disputed structure in Ayodhya on December 6, 1992, two FIRs were lodged. While Crime no. 197 dealt with “demolition of the mosque by kar sevaks,” Crime no .198 named Advani, Joshi and 20 others for inciting the mob through their speeches and conspiring the demolition of Babri mosque.
 
The trial on the basis of the first FIR started at the special CBI court in Lucknow, while the case in the second FIR against 22 leaders proceeded at a special court in Rae Bareli. Nine of the accused named in the second FIR, including Ashok Singhal, Giriraj Kishore, Bal Thakre, died during the trial.
 
Meanwhile, on April 19, 2017, while ordering restoration of conspiracy charges against the accused named in second FIR (No 198) , the Supreme Court ordered the CBI to club both the cases and a composite trial should be held at the Lucknow court. It also asked the court to start a day-to-day hearing and finish it within two years.

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