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SC reserves order against top BJP leaders in Babri Masjid demolition case

The Supreme Court (SC) today reserved its order against top BJP leaders in the Babri Masjid demolition case. The court was hearing a petition filed by CBI that seeks to restore conspiracy charges against prominent BJP leaders such as L K Advani, M M Joshi and Uma Bharti. The court will also examine the possibility of transferring the trial of these leaders from a court in Rae Bareli to Lucknow. It may be recalled that two sets of cases were filed post the demolition of Babri Masjid. In the first case, the trial for which is being conducted in Lucknow court, the accused are unnamed karsevaks. The trial for the second case involving senior BJP leaders is being conducted in a Rae Bareli court.

The Supreme Court bench comprising Justices P C Ghose and R F Nariman may also consider holding a joint trial of both the cases. The court expressed its dissatisfaction over the 25-year delay in the case and said that it might order a time bound trial to be completed within a time-frame of not more than two years. The proposal to hold joint trials was opposed by advocate K K Venugopal, who appeared for Advani and Joshi. However, the same was supported by advocate Kapil Sibal, who represented one of the interveners.

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