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Babri Masjid Demolition Trial Is A Textbook Example Of How Delayed Justice Can Be

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Babri Masjid demolition
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It has been 27 years since the demolition of the Babri Masjid. It seems like the wound of this incident is still fresh even after all these years because the case has been stretched for too long. The lawsuit was initially filed in the year 1992 after the demolition on 6 December of the same year. ETV News Today has gathered the facts of the events that ensued post the FIRs. Apart from the two main FIRs on the names of Kar Sevaks for the demolition, there were 47 further FIRs on the same day.

The first nail in the coffin of justice was hammered when the cases were bifurcated between the Criminal Investigation Department of the Uttar Pradesh Police and the CBI. The CBI was handed FIR 197 regarding the Kar-Sevaks and FIR 198 against the VHP and BJP leaders were given to the UP Police CID. It took more than eight months just to a lot the cases to the relevant investigation authorities. The morning shows the day, they say.

It was on 5 October 1993 that the CBI was successful in filing its first charge sheet. It took them an additional two years to charge a supplementary charge sheet on 10 January 1996 to infer that the demolition of the Babri Masjid was a planned conspiracy.

The next nail worked its way to seal the coffin of justice when Section 120(B) of the Indian Penal Code came into play. It was not until 1997 that a magistrate ordered to frame charges against 48 people including Shiv Sena leader, Bal Thackeray. The sloth-like nature of Indian Justice System began showing its true colors the case against 34 of the lot was transferred to the Allahabad High Court. For the duration of these four years, things seemed like they had come to a standstill without any force of its own.

As if the existing distribution of cases between 2 authorities was not bad enough, the special court in Lucknow came up with a more cumbersome process. It was decided the trials will be bifurcated as well- 21 in Rae Bareli and 27 in Lucknow. But easily the most confusing fact was the CBI’s view on L.K. Advani’s role in the events of 1992. The CBI announced that they would withdraw the criminal conspiracy charge against Advani in July 2003 and a new charge sheet was filed in Rae Bareli court. It took the CBI two more years to reframe the charges against him. In 2005, the high court filed a charge against him and accused him of inciting hate.

ETV Bharat News has reported on the details of these events and the repercussions of these acts. It was decided in 2011, after six years, that the case would be handled totally in Lucknow. Things have been delayed for a long time after the date of the actual occurrence of the events. Not to anyone’s surprise, it was stretched further. The justice system kept on feeding the delay as multiple petitions were filed for the next seven years.

Even with numerous eyewitnesses and video proof supporting the prosecution as well as the defendants, the only successful task that the court did was dig into the wounds of people’s emotions. 27 years! That is what it takes for India to realize what’s right and what’s wrong. Some of the accused were dead by the time the court could come to a decision.

Ultimately, on 9 December 2019, the Supreme Court finally gave the result people had almost lost their hopes on. It handed over the land to a Hindu trust and an alternate piece of land to build a mosque. But all these years spent and for what? This happened when it was a high profile case and thus can be called a textbook example of delayed justice.

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Pranab Bhandari is working in one of India's fast-growing news network(ETV Bharat) as a content marketing manager. He has expertise in writing about the arts & entertainment industries of India.

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