Ay­o­d­hya ver­dict to­day

Judg­ment at 10.30 am; Modi calls for peace; UP schools shut

Deccan Chronicle - - Front Page - DC COR­RE­SPON­DENT

The much-awaited judg­ment on the po­lit­i­cally sen­si­tive case of Ram Jan­mb­hoomi-Babri Masjid land dis­pute in Ay­o­d­hya is set to be pro­nounced at 10.30 am on Satur­day.

The Con­sti­tu­tion Bench will pro­nounce its ver­dict on a batch of pe­ti­tions chal­leng­ing the Al­la­habad High Court’s Septem­ber 30, 2010 judg­ment that tri­fur­cated the dis­puted site in three parts, giv­ing two parts to Hindu lit­i­gants — the idol of Lord Ram Lalla and Nir­mohi Akhara — and one to Mus­lims.

Chief Jus­tice Ran­jan Go­goi on Fri­day held a meet­ing with the chief sec­re­tary and DGP of Ut­tar Pradesh and took stock of se­cu­rity ar­range­ments ahead of the ver­dict, of­fi­cials said.

In a series of tweets, Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi on Fri­day ap­pealed to the peo­ple that the pri­or­ity should be to strengthen In­dia’s tra­di­tion of main­tain­ing peace and har­mony af­ter the ver­dict is pro­nounced on Satur­day.

“The Supreme Court ver­dict on Ay­o­d­hya would not be a mat­ter of vic­tory or loss. My ap­peal to coun­try­men is that it should be our pri­or­ity that the ver­dict should strengthen In­dia’s great tra­di­tion of peace, unity and amity,” he said.

As a pre­cau­tion­ary mea­sure, all ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions in Ut­tar Pradesh, Delhi and Mad­hya Pradesh will re­main closed on Satur­day.

Elab­o­rate se­cu­rity ar­range­ments have also been made across the state and a spe­cial vigil is be­ing main­tained on so­cial me­dia. If re­quired, checks would be im­posed on it, the of­fi­cial said.

The five-judge bench, com­pris­ing CJI Go­goi, Jus­tices S.A. Bobde, D.Y. Chan­drachud, Ashok Bhushan and S. Ab­dul Nazeer, had re­served the ver­dict on the con­tin­u­ous dis­pute on Oc­to­ber 16 af­ter hear­ing the ar­gu­ments that lasted for 40 days.

Be­sides the ar­gu­ment based on faith and be­lief ce­mented by the oral, doc­u­men­tary ev­i­dence based on the trav­el­ogues of var­i­ous trav­eller’s and the ar­chae­o­log­i­cal ev­i­dence, the core of the ar­gu­ments was that the place un­der the cen­tral dome of the now-de­mol­ished Babri Mosque was the birth place of Lord Ram.

The Hindu lit­i­gants — rep­re­sented by lawyers K. Parasaran and C.S. Vaidyanath­an — have con­tended that the “Jan­mas­than” was it­self a swayambhu — a man­i­fes­ta­tion of god-like holy tem­ples Kedar­nath and Badri­nath.

How­ever, the Mus­lim side pointed to the vary­ing stand of the Hindu lit­i­gants who ear­lier has as­serted that Ram Chabu­tra — lo­cated in the outer court­yard of the dis­puted site — was Lord Ram’s Jan­mas­than.

Ini­tially, as many as five law­suits were filed in the lower court. The first one was filed by Gopal Singh Visharad, a devo­tee of ‘’Ram Lalla’’, in 1950 to seek en­force­ment of the right to wor­ship of Hin­dus at the dis­puted site. Later, the Nir­mohi Aka­hara also moved the trial court in 1959 seek­ing man­age­ment and she­baiti’ (devo­tee) rights over the

2.77 acre dis­puted land. Then came the law­suit of the Ut­tar Pradesh Sunni Cen­tral Wakf Board which moved the court in

1961, claim­ing ti­tle right over the dis­puted prop­erty.

Be­sides the ques­tion of lim­i­ta­tion in chal­leng­ing the ap­point­ment of re­ceiver of the dis­puted site in 1950, the hear­ing has wit­nessed di­ver­gence be­tween de­ity of Lord Ram and Ram Jan­mab­hoomi Nyas on one hand and the Nir­mohi Akhara — She­bait of the tem­ple over the ti­tle of the dis­puted site.

The Mus­lim lit­i­gant, mainly rep­re­sented by se­nior coun­sel Ra­jeev Dha­van and Ja­faryab Ji­lani, has con­tended that the mosque was in ex­is­tence since 1528 and they were of­fer­ing prayers till 1949 when idols were planted right un­der the cen­tral dome, (now de­mol­ished) of Babri Mosque on the in­ter­ven­ing night of De­cem­ber 23-23, 1949.

The Mus­lim side too re­lied on the oral and doc­u­mented ev­i­dence to but­tress their claim over the ti­tle of the dis­puted site.

How­ever, the Mus­lim side ad­mit­ted that wor­ship was be­ing of­fered at Ram Chabu­tra and has con­ceded that if its claim to the ti­tle of the dis­puted site is up­held it would have no ob­jec­tion to devo­tees of­fer­ing prayers at Ram Chabu­tra.

The apex court had on Au­gust 6 com­menced dayto-day pro­ceed­ings in the case as the me­di­a­tion pro­ceed­ings ini­ti­ated to find the am­i­ca­ble res­o­lu­tion had failed.

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