BJP veteran Lal Krishna Advani, MP Murli Manohar Joshi and Union Minister Uma Bharti were on Wednesday granted relaxation from personal appearance in the special CBI court investigating the Babri Masjid demolition case, reported ANI. A special CBI court in Lucknow has been holding daily hearings in the 1992 demolition that has been a significant moment in India’s political history.
On May 30, the court had framed charges against 12 people, including Advani, Joshi and Uma Bharti, in the demolition case. Their applications for discharge from the offence were rejected and they were granted bail on a personal bond of Rs 50,000 each. The court also rejected the CBI opposition to their bail applications.
On April 19, the Supreme Court had ordered the restoration of a conspiracy charge against the three leaders directing the special court to “complete the trial and deliver the judgment within a period of two years”. The apex court also shifted the trial from Rae Bareli to Lucknow.
Also read | What L K Advani, Uma Bharti, Murli Manohar Joshi and Kalyan Singh are charged with. Click here.
“The matter is sub judice. But there is not an iota of political gesturing in the Ram Temple issue. It is a matter of faith and belief,” UP BJP chief and deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya had earlier told PTI. “Every person wants a Ram Temple to be constructed in Ayodhya. And whenever the courts give a decision on any issue (related to the temple), there is some ‘garmaahat’ (galvanisation),” BJP national vice-president and Rajya Sabha MP Prabhat Jha said.
Meanwhile, prosecution witness Dinesh Verma appeared before the special court on Tuesday. Verma’s statement was examined by the prosecution. “Dinesh Verma, posted at UP’s information and public relations department, had videographed the visit of then chief minister Kalyan Singh at Ramlala, Ayodhya, in June 1991. Kalyan Singh had gone there a day after taking oath as chief minister of UP on June 24, 1991. Today, statement of Dinesh Verma was partially examined by the prosecution,” said CBI special counsel Lalit Kumar Singh.