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Supreme Court declines security to judge who gave Babri verdict

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The Supreme Court on Monday declined to extend the security granted to former special court judge SK Yadav.

Notably, SK Yadav had delivered the verdict in the three-decade-old Babri Masjid demolition case on September 30 this year.

He had acquitted all the 32 accused in the case including BJP veterans LK Advani, MM Joshi and Uma Bharti. The former judge had sought an extension of his personal security over the sensitivity of the case.

The Babri Masjid demolition case hearings that involved evidence from 351 CBI witnesses and about 600 exhibits had ended on September 1 and SK Yadav had started writing the judgment from the very next day to meet the deadline set by the Supreme Court.

The 16th-century mosque was razed by thousands of “Kar Sevaks” who believed it was built on the ruins of an ancient temple that marked the birthplace of Lord Ram in Ayodhya. The incident led to riots that left 3,000 dead and changed India’s political landscape forever.

What did the Supreme Court say?

The Supreme Court said: “Having perused the letter dated September 30, we do not consider it necessary to continue (the) security.”

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A Supreme Court bench, headed by Justice RF Nariman and also comprising Justices Navin Sinha and Krishna Murari, was considering the former judge’s request to continue his personal security in view of the sensitivity of the case decided by him on his last day in office.

Notably, SK Yadav was supposed to retire in 2019 after attaining the age of 60 years. However, he was granted an extension by the Supreme Court to hear the 28-year-old case which was being adjudicated by him since 2015.

What did SK Yadav say in Babri case judgment?

On September 30, the special court had acquitted all 32 accused in the case saying there was no conclusive evidence that they were part of any conspiracy to bring down the disputed structure in Ayodhya.

SK Yadav had said: “Anti-social elements brought down the structure. The accused leaders tried to stop these people.”  He added that merely giving a provocative speech was not enough to prove guilt.

Last year, a five-judge Constitution bench of the apex court had ruled that the 2.77-acre land claimed by both Hindus and Muslims would be handed over to a trust for the building of a temple.

The Supreme Court had also ordered the allocation of five-acre land at another site in Ayodhya for building a mosque.

 

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