All the 32 accused in the Babri mosque demolition case, including BJP veterans L K Advani and MM Joshi, were on Wednesday acquitted by a special CBI court.
The court said there was no conclusive proof against the accused. The case relates to the razing of the disputed structure in Ayodhya on December 6, 1992.
Those acquitted in the case include former Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani, former Union Ministers M.M. Joshi, Uma Bharti, former Chief Minister Kalyan Singh and Mahant Nritya Gopal Das, among others.
Special CBI judge S.K. Yadav, in his verdict, said that the demotion was not a planned incident but a spontaneous act. The court further said the CBI had failed to substantiate the charges levelled against the 32 accused persons for the past 28 years. The court also said that the video recordings submitted to the court were 'tampered with'.
As soon as the court announced the acquittal of the accused, jubilation broke out outside the court, in Ayodhya and Lucknow, where supporters of the leaders were present to celebrate the occasion.
Champat Rai, the general secretary of the trust in charge of constructing the temple, is also among the accused. The CBI, which went into the case, produced 351 witnesses and 600 documents as evidence before the court.
Charges were framed against 48 people, but 16 had died during the course of the trial. Over two dozen of 32 accused were present. Advani (92), Joshi (86), Bharti (61), Singh (88), Nritya Gopal Das and Satish Pradhan were not present in court.