The Supreme Court on Friday said it will take up the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute again on December 5, which also happens to be the eve of the Babri Masjid demolition’s 25th anniversary. The three-judge bench was hearing 13 petitions challenging the Allahabad High Court verdict in the Ayodhya land dispute case, reported The Times of India.
The high court had said that the land be divided equally among three parties – the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla. However, on August 8, the Uttar Pradesh’ Shia Waqf Board had sought to be a party in the case. It told the Supreme Court that a mosque can be built in a Muslim-dominated area at a reasonable distance from the disputed site.
Justices Dipak Misra, Ashok Bhushan and Abdul Naseer also granted the Supreme Court registry three months’ time to translate the documents related to Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute, reported the Hindustan Times. The bench also rejected Bharatiya Janata Party leader and Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy’s plea to be a petitioner in the case. The court said it would give him the opportunity after all parties are heard.
On July 21, the top court had agreed to list the matter for hearing soon, based on a Swamy’s petition. He had asked for an urgent listing of the case, highlighting that the main appeals against the Allahabad High Court have been pending for seven years in the Supreme Court.
The row over the ownership of the 2.7 acres of the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land has raged on for decades. On December 6, 1992, Hindu volunteers gathered at the site had demolished the mosque. The incident had triggered communal riots across the country.