Allahabad Court dimisses plea against Advani in Babri mosque demolition case

The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday dismissed a plea challenging the acquittal of 32 accused including former deputy prime minister L K Advani in the Babri mosque demolition case, saying the appellants have no locus standi in the matter.

A Lucknow bench of justices Ramesh Sinha and Saroj Yadav rejected the appeal by two Ayodhya residents – Haji Mahmood Ahmad and Syed Akhlaq Ahmad – in the admission stage.

“The two appellants cannot be treated as ‘victims’, therefore, they have no locus to maintain the instant appeal,” the court said.

The leaders whose acquittal was challenged include the then Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh, senior BJP leaders M.M. Joshi, Uma Bharti, Vinay Katiyar and Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, and Sadhvi Ritambhara.

The duo contended in the petition that they were witnesses in the trial against the accused and were “victims” of the demolition of the disputed structure and as such were entitled to file the appeal.

In its objection, the state government counsel Arunendra, CBI counsel Shiv Shukla and an accused Champat Rai’s senior counsel Raghvendra Singh had stressed that the two appellants were not complainants or victims in the case and they cannot appeal as a stranger against the verdict of the trial court.

After hearing the arguments of the parties, the bench reserved its order on October 31.