Ayodhya Verdict | ‘Obvious That SC Recognised Faith’: Sanjay Hegde

The SC Lawyer said, “Unanimity is very important in such cases which have deep social implications.”

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While welcoming the unanimous Ayodhya verdict, Supreme Court lawyer Sanjay Hegde told The Quint, “Unanimity is very important in such cases which have deep social implications.”

Speaking about the SC order that calls for the creation of a central government-led trust, entrusted with the responsibility to come up with the scheme for the Ram temple and also ensure Muslims are given five acres of alternate land, Hegde says,

“Under Article 142 of the constitution, the SC has all the powers to render an order which does complete justice in the matter and the SC has invoked those powers to give complete quitus to the matter. Very often, the central government has been asked to formulate schemes when there is no legislation, for instance. Here, the central government was already acting as the statutory receiver, ever since the Farooqui judgment. Now the central government has been told what to do with the land and in what manner both claims are to be satisfied.”
Sanjay Hegde, Supreme Court Lawyer

The order says that the Muslims were unable to prove exclusive possession of the disputed site.

Hegde explains, “The verdict calls the demolition of the mosque a negation of the rule of law. That is very important. It also condemns the act of placing the idols inside the mosque in 1949. However, it goes further back and says pre-1857, there was no evidence of exclusive possession in Muslim hands alone.”

He adds, “Post 1857, there were British administrators who divided the land in a manner of speaking by allowing Hindus access to the outer courtyards and giving the inner courtyards to the Muslims. That itself did not grant exclusive possession. In a sense, the court was told to unscramble a 500-year-old scrambled egg. It has tried its best under the circumstances,” he says.

“The court seems to have traveled a very careful path. In the earlier bits, it has said it will not give a judgment based on faith alone. But in the moulding of the relief and taking into account ground realities, it has obviously recognised what the faiths of men might possibly compel them to do in case their emotions were not assuaged.”
Sanjay Hegde, Supreme Court Lawyer

Looking forward, Hegde says, “A man may want to file a review, but does he have a case for review? I doubt it, because it seems to me that all the evidence and pleasings were taken account of. The only question as far as the moulding of relief is concerned is Article 145.”

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