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All 32 accused of Babri demolition acquitted by CBI special court

A special CBI court has acquitted all 32 accused of demolishing the Babri Mosque saying it was a spontaneous act and not a planned move.

The Babri Mosque was demolished on December 6, 1992, by a mob, the aftermath of which saw riots erupt at various places in the country. The verdict has come one year after the Supreme Court ruled in November 2019 that the site be given for the construction of a temple and a new plot be allotted to the mosque.

The case against former deputy prime minister L.K. Advani, former Union ministers M.M. Joshi and Uma Bharti, former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh and priest Mahant Nritya Gopal Das had been going on for 28 years.

In a much-awaited verdict, special CBI judge S.K. Yadav said: "The accused tried to stop the demolition." He said that Ashok Singhal and other Sangh Parivar leaders wanted to save the structure because the Ram Lalla statues were inside. He added that those who razed the 16th-century mosque were "anti-social elements."

The court said that leaders present on the dais had repeatedly appealed to the 'kar sewaks' from taking any action.

The judge also pointed out that the prosecution could not produce enough evidence against the accused. He said that the authenticity of audio and video provided by the CBI could not be proven and the audio of the speeches were not clear.

The court said the CBI has failed to substantiate the charges levelled against the 32 accused persons. The court also said that the video recordings submitted to the court were 'tampered with'.

Babri plaintiff, Iqbal Ansari, said that after the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Ram temple last year, the demolition case had lost its relevance. "I welcome the acquittal of the 32 persons by the court. There should be no further dispute on the matter," he said.

While the senior BJP leaders were not present in the court, they watched the proceedings online via video. The other 26 accused who were present in court, said that they had always maintained the demotion was a conspiracy by the then Congress government..