The Supreme Court on Monday sought a report on the 1992 Babri Masjid demolition case from a sessions judge in a Lucknow court on how he intends to complete the trial in the case involving BJP veterans LK Advani, MM Joshi and Uma Bharti within the given April 2019 deadline.
A bench of Justices R F Nariman and Indu Malhotra also sought the Uttar Pradesh government's response on a plea of trial court judge S K Yadav, whose promotion was stayed by the Allahabad High Court on the ground that the apex court had directed him to complete the trial. The court asked for the report in a sealed cover.
Terming the demolition of the Babri Masjid mosque a crime, the Supreme Court on April 19, 2017 had stated that Advani, Joshi and Uma Bharti would be prosecuted for serious offence of criminal conspiracy in the case and ordered the daily trial to be concluded in two years, ie April 19, 2019. The court had allowed CBI's plea on the restoration of the criminal conspiracy charge against the VVIP accused.
"There shall be no de novo (fresh) trial. There shall be no transfer of the Judge conducting the trial until the entire trial concludes. The case shall not be adjourned on any ground except when the sessions court finds it impossible to carry on the trial for that particular date," the SC had said.
There were two sets of cases relating to the demolition of the disputed structure on December 6, 1992: The first involved unnamed 'karsevaks', the trial of which is taking place in a Lucknow court, while the second set of cases relate to the leaders in a Rae Bareli court.
(With inputs from agencies)