Court frames charges against Advani, Joshi, Bharti, 3 others in Babri Masjid demolition case

Earlier in the day, the CBI Special Court grants them bail on personal bonds

May 30, 2017 09:51 am | Updated 10:11 pm IST

Police keep tight vigil outside the court premises in Lucknow, where the Babri Masjid demolition trial is about to begin on Monday.

Police keep tight vigil outside the court premises in Lucknow, where the Babri Masjid demolition trial is about to begin on Monday.

Senior BJP leaders L.K. Advani, M.M. Joshi and Uma Bharti were on Tuesday charged with criminal conspiracy in the the December 6, 1992 Babri Masjid demolition case by a Special CBI Court in Lucknow.


Here are the Live updates:

05:15 pm: The court, which earlier rejected their discharge petition, framed the charges and three others under Section 120 (B) of the IPC (criminal conspiracy).

The three others are the BJP’s Vinay Katiyar (62), VHP’s Vishnu Hari Dalmiya, who is in his late eighties, and one-time Hindutva firebrand Sadhvi Rithambara (53).

4:00 pm: Enough evidence on record against Mr. Advani, Dr. Joshi, Ms. Bharti and others for framing of criminal conspiracy charge, the court says.

2:45 pm: The court dismisses the discharge plea filed by the BJP leaders. It will now frame charges against Mr. Advani, Dr. Joshi, Ms. Bharti and others.

2:05 pm: Mr. Katiyar calls for action against Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav for ordering the firing on kar sevaks.

2:00 pm: BJP leader Sakshi Mahraj tells reporters, "It is punya. I did not commit any crime. No force can stop the construction of a temple."

1:50 pm: Before entering the court, he emphasises on "taking a decision to construct Ram Mandir. "There has been decision [to build temple] since 1992. Many people died in the course of the case. Justice should be done quickly. And the same hurry should be shown in construction of a Ram mandir," he says.

01:35 pm: All the accused submit a discharge application.

01:22 pm: Court grants bail to Mr. Advani and others on personal bonds.

12:45 pm: Ms. Bharti, Dr. Joshi, Ram Vilas Vedanti and others reach the court.

12:20 pm: Mr. Advani reaches the court. Sadhvi Ritambhara and Mr. Katiyar are also inside the court. Ms. Bharti and Dr. Joshi are expected soon, reports Omar Rashid.

11:30 am: The BJP leaders arrive in Lucknow. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath meets Mr. Advani.


10:30 am Here is a video explainer to decode the Babri Masjid case file.


10:15 am Along with Mr. Advani, Ms. Bharti and Dr. Joshi, Mr. Katiyar, Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s Vishnu Hari Dalmia, Mr. Vedanti, Sadhvi Ritambara, Mahant Nritya Gopaldas, Mahant Dharamdas, Champat Rai and Satish Pradhan are scheduled to appear before the court.

10:10 am This is the first time that the leaders would appear before a court in connection with the Babri Masjid demolition case after the Supreme Court in April restored the criminal conspiracy charges framed against them, overruling the Allahabad High Court judgment that dropped the charges.

10:00 am On May 25, the Special CBI Court summoned the leaders to appear before it in person on May 30 for the framing of charges against them. The BJP leaders had moved court seeking exemption from appearance but the court said they would be allowed no such relaxation.

In April, the Supreme Court used its extraordinary constitutional powers under Article 142 to revive the criminal charges against the BJP leaders. The court also transferred the Rae Bareli case in the demolition and clubbed it with the Lucknow case pending before a CBI Special Court.

While the case in Rae Bareli accused Mr. Advani, Dr. Joshi, Ms. Bharti and other BJP and Sangh Parivar leaders of giving provocative speeches, the case in Lucknow was against “lakhs of unknown kar sevaks” and deals with the actual act of demolition of the mosque, and violence.

The Supreme Court, however, exempted Rajasthan Governor Kalyan Singh, who was the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister at the time of the incident, from facing trial as of now.

The trial, on a day-to-day basis, is to be completed in two years, the apex court ordered.






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