Ayodhya Mediation Fails, SC to Conduct Hearings From 6 August
The outcome of the mediation process will be considered by a five-judge Constitution Bench on Friday, 2 August.
On Friday, 2 August, the Supreme Court announced that the mediation process in the Ayodhya Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute has been unsuccessful, as a result of which the court will resume hearing the matter from 6 August.
The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) welcomed the Supreme Court's announcement. The right-wing organisation said that it has confidence that the case, which has been pending for a long time now, will be resolved in a definite period of time and the construction of the Ram Mandir will begin soon.
The five-judge Bench, headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, has said that the hearings in the title dispute will be heard on a day-to-day basis. The judges are hearing the appeals filed by various Hindu and Muslim parties against the Allahabad High Court’s 2010 verdict, which distributed the land equally between two Hindu parties and one Muslim party.
The mediation panel appointed by the Supreme Court had submitted its outcome report to the court on Thursday, 1 August, in a sealed envelope, in compliance with an order dated 18 July.
The panel, which comprised former apex court judge Kalifulla, spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravishankar and senior advocate Sriram Panchu, had been given time till Thursday, 1 August, to submit its final report, which is 13 days prior to the earlier 15 August deadline set by the Supreme Court.
According to the Indian Express, the three-member committee formally informed all the participants that they could not reach any conclusion and the proceedings have been formally closed.
The five-judge Constitution Bench headed by the CJI was supposed to be making a decision on this issue after getting the committee’s report on 15 August.
However, one of the original litigants in the Ram Janmabhoomi case, on 9 July, moved the SC seeking an early hearing of the matter, claiming that the mediation was not proving successful. As a result, the court asked for a status update on the mediation, and sought the committee’s views on whether there was any chance the mediation could bear any fruit.
Fourteen appeals have been filed in the apex court against the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment, delivered in four civil suits, that the 2.77-acre land in Ayodhya be partitioned equally among the three parties – the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla.
On 6 December 1992, the Babri Masjid, constructed at the disputed site in the 16th century by Mir Baqi, was demolished by Hindu kar sevaks.
The mosque had been maintained as a Sunni mosque and the Sunni Waqf Board have been the main Muslim party in the dispute, although the Shia Waqf Board has also sought to intervene on the basis that Mir Baqi was a Shia Muslim.
(With inputs from The Indian Express, PTI and ANI)
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