The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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HC notices on Kalyan Babri plea

New Delhi, Sept. 5: Delhi High Court today issued notices to the Liberhan Commission, the Centre and the Uttar Pradesh government on a petition filed by Kalyan Singh challenging the summons issued to him by the panel probing the run-up to the Babri Masjid demolition.

The Centre opposed the petition in court. “His petition was disposed of in April and now he wants to revive it. This is not maintainable,” argued Nisha Kant Pandey, the counsel for the Union government.

Justice A.K. Sikri gave the Centre, the commission and the state government 10 days to file a reply. The case will come up for hearing again on September 19.

Kalyan’s lawyer M.. Krishnamani said his client was being dragged unnecessarily by the commission. On September 2, it had issued non-bailable arrest warrants against the former Uttar Pradesh chief minister to force him to appear as witness.

Kalyan has been declining to depose before the commission, contending that his statement would be used against him in the criminal trial he is facing in the Babri demolition case.

The former chief minister was summoned by the commission after he alleged in July that he was betrayed by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani, who had “conspired” to demolish the mosque. After he failed to appear, Justice Liberhan issued the warrant.

The high court’s observation during the next hearing will be important. If the former chief minister fails to get a reprieve, the commission can order the police to arrest him.

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