The Supreme Court will on Friday pronounce its verdict on whether to send the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case in Ayodhya for mediation as a “permanent solution”, ANI reported. On Wednesday, the court had reserved its order in the case.
A Constitution bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices SA Bobde, Ashok Bhushan, Abdul Nazeer and DY Chandrachud had said on Wednesday that it was aware of the gravity of the matter and the outcome of mediation on the body politic of the country.
Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi asked parties in the matter to suggest names for a panel of mediators by Wednesday itself. “We intend to pass the order soon,” he said.
The counsel for the Hindu Mahasabha, however, opposed the mediation. “The issue is religious and sentimental,” he said. “Not a mere property dispute.” The Hindu Mahasabha said a public notice is necessary before the matter is sent for mediation.
Justice SA Bobde said the outcome of the mediation does not concern the court. “You are looking into outcome even before mediation is attempted,” Bobde said.
Advocate CS Vaidyanathan, representing the deity Ram Lalla, also opposed mediation, saying that repeated attempts were made earlier to settle the dispute amicably but had failed. Vaidyanathan said the temple has to be built at Ram Janmasthan and an alternative place could be considered for the mosque. “We are ready to crowd fund the construction of a mosque elsewhere.”
The Uttar Pradesh government was also opposed to mediation.
Advocate Rajeev Dhawan, counsel for the Sunni Waqf Board, which had also opposed the mediation, said on Wednesday that the organisation was open to try it. He said any compromise or settlement will bind parties and asked the Supreme Court to frame the terms for mediation.
The top court on February 26 suggested to the parties of the Ayodhya dispute that they try mediation to resolve the dispute. However, none of the litigants were willing to accept this offer. The Supreme Court then gave the parties six weeks to study translations made by the Uttar Pradesh government in the status report on the case.