The Supreme Court on Thursday asked a Rae Bareily court to conduct expeditious hearing of the criminal proceedings related to the Babri Masjid demolition case.
BJP leaders including LK Advani are facing trial, even as the charges of criminal conspiracy have been dropped against them. CBI is before the SC challenging the Allahabad HC order upholding trial court's verdict dropping the conspiracy charges.
A bench headed by Justice HL Dattu expressed deep anguish over non-appearance of CBI counsel and said since there was no stay on the HC judgment, the trial court should conduct expeditious hearing.
It observed the investigating agency and its law officer was taking the matter casually. The court was informed that 38 witnesses have already been examined in the case.
The bench, meanwhile, allowed CBI to remove the name of Bal Thackeray from the list of accused as he died recently.
Besides, Advani others against whom the CBI wants the charges of criminal conspiracy under Section 120B IPC restored are - Kalyan Singh, Uma Bharti, Satish Pradhan, CR Bansal, MM Joshi, Vinay Katiyar, Ashok Singhal, Giriraj Kishore, Sadhvi Ritambhara among others.
The HC had on May 21, 2010 upheld CBI special court's decision to drop conspiracy charges against the leaders.
It had, however, allowed the agency to proceed with other charges against Advani and others in a Rae Bareily court, under which the disputed structure falls.
There are two cases - one against Advani and others who were on the dais at Ram Katha Kunj in Ayodhya in December 1992 when the Babri Masjid was demolished, while the other against lakhs of unknown' karsevaks' who were in and around the disputed structure - arising out of the incident.