Opening of Babri mosque locks was illegal: High Court

Updated on Oct 03, 2010 09:59 PM IST
The special bench of Lucknow High Court, while pronouncing verdict in Babri Masjid-Ramjanma Bhoomi case on September 30, had also indicted the district judge Faizabad who had allowed the opening of the locks of the mosque in 1986. Masoodul Hasan reports. See special
HT Image
HT Image
Hindustan Times | ByMasoodul Hasan, Lucknow

The special bench of Lucknow High Court, while pronouncing verdict in Babri Masjid-Ramjanma Bhoomi case on September 30, had also indicted the district judge Faizabad who had allowed the opening of the locks of the mosque in 1986.

The court said opening of locks on February 1, 1986 was not only illegal but was prelude to the demolition of mosque on December 6, 1992.

One of the judges in three-member bench Justice SU Khan expressed surprise over the hasty manner in which the district court bypassing well laid legal procedure directed the Faizabad administration to open the locks.

During Rajiv Gandhi regime one Umesh Chandra Pandey had moved an application in Faizabad Court on January 28, 1986 for opening of the locks. The Muslims had then accused the Rajiv Gandhi government of facilitating the opening of locks. The mosque was locked on December 23, 1949 after the idols were placed under the central dome.

Indicting the district court Justice Khan said “it is a sound principle that not only justice must be done but it must also appear to be done. Before passing the judgment dated 1.2.1986 the learned District judge (KM Pandey) first buried the second limb of the principle (appearance of justice) very deep. Probably the learned judge was of the view that he would not be able to pass the order (which obviously, according to him, must have been a just order) in case he bothered about the appearance of justice being done. This obviously shook the faith of the parties affected by the judgment which was the real tragedy”.

The HC after 24 years has now declared the entire process illegal. Since the application of Mohd Hashim who intervened in local court opposing opening of locks was then rejected he had moved High Court in 1986 and it was simultaneously decided on September 30, 2010.

Justice Khan said since Umesh Chandra was not a party in the suit, his appeal was not maintainable. “It is quite interesting to note that a person who was a party in the connected suit which was leading case was considered to be neither necessary nor proper party by the District Judge (KN Pandey), however, Umesh Chand Pandey who was not a party in the suit was held entitled to file appeal which was also allowed”.

The high court said the district court had wrongly rejected the impleadment application of Mohd Hashim “as a result of which there was no one to oppose the appeal as District Magistrate and SP categorically supported the appeal”.

Since the file of the leading case was pending in High Court, Justice Khan said “without the file of the leading case no order could be passed either by the Munsif or by the district judge”.

While pointing out that there was absolutely no occasion to show such undue haste, the HC said the appeal for opening of locks was filed on January 31, 1986, and was allowed on February 1, 1986. “At least the reason for this extreme haste is not mentioned in the judgment”, Justice Khan said.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Close Story
QUICKREADS

Less time to read?

Try Quickreads

  • The skywalk near Viviana Mall in Thane Praful Gangurde/HT Photo

    Locals flag safety concerns on skywalk nearly two km from CM Shinde’s residence

    Four days after a college student was allegedly molested on a skywalk at Manpada, local residents have raised safety concerns over another skywalk in the heart of the city which they claim is taken over by miscreants at night as there are no adequate lights and CCTV cameras. Interestingly, this skywalk near Viviana Mall is barely a few metres from former minister Jitendra Awhad's home and around two km from chief minister Eknath Shinde's residence.

  • Mumbai, India – August 16, 2018: A view of Ramtek Bungalow, at Walkeshwar, in Mumbai, India, on Thursday, Aug 16, 2018. (Photo by Bhushan Koyande/HT) (HT PHOTO)

    Newly-appointed ministers lobby for posh Malabar Hill official bungalows

    With its private beach and a sprawling lawn, Ramtek bungalow in Malabar Hill leads the list, followed by Royal Stone, a colonial-style bungalow with wooden flooring located in Peddar Road. While Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Rahul Narvekar and revenue minister Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil have requested for Royal Stone, forest minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, labour minister Suresh Khade and Vikhe-Patil are vying for Ramtek bungalow, the largest bungalow after Varsha, the official residence of the chief minister.

  • Mumbai, India - August 15, 2022: Two senior citizens died after the ceiling portion from the first floor of the ground-plus-two Moti Chhaya Building collapsed on Monday evening at Mulund (East), in Mumbai, India, on Monday, August 15, 2022. (Photo by Satish Bate/ Hindustan Times) (Satish Bate/HT PHOTO)

    Mulund building collapse: Roof gives way, killing old couple

    Mumbai: Two senior citizens lost their lives after the ceiling of a residential structure in which they resided came down on Monday evening. The deceased were identified as Devshankar Nathalal Shukla (93) and his wife, Arkhiben Devshankar Shukla (87). According to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation's (BMC) disaster control cell, the incident took place at around 7.46 pm, on the first floor of the building.

  • Widespread protests had broken out across Shivamogga in February over the murder of 26-year-old Bajrang Dal activist Harsha. (Representational photo)

    Violence erupts over Savarkar, Tipu photos in Shivamogga

    Karnataka Police on Monday imposed curbs under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) in Shivamogga town after a clash between two groups over banners featuring Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh ideologue V D Savarkar and 18th Century ruler Tipu Sultan. A senior police officer familiar with the matter said tension broke out after a banner featuring Savarkar was put up at Amir Ahmed Circle, in Shivamogga, as part of Independence Day celebrations.

  • A policeman salutes the national flag, in Bengaluru. (PTI)

    In a first, Tricolour hoisted at Idgah Maidan amid tight vigil

    In a first, the national flag was hoisted amid tight security on Monday morning at Idgah Maidan in Chamarajpet. The Tricolour was hoisted at the Idgah Maidan by assistant commissioner of Bengaluru (Urban) MG Shivanna. Chamarajpet MLA Zameer Ahmed Khan, member of Lok Sabha from Bengaluru Central constituency PC Mohan, additional commissioner of police (Bengaluru west) Sandeep Patil and deputy commissioner of police (Bengaluru west) Laxman Nimbargi were also present in the event.

SHARE
Story Saved
×
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Tuesday, August 16, 2022
Start 15 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now