The Supreme Court on Friday said it would conclude arguments in the Ayodhya land dispute case by October 17, PTI reported. Last month, the top court had asked parties involved in the case to complete their arguments by October 18, and had said they would not get an extra day.

A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi fixed the schedule for the final round of arguments on the 37th day of hearing.

The bench, which also comprises Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and SA Nazeer, said the Muslim parties would conclude the arguments in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute case on October 14. The court said the Hindu parties will get until October 16 to wrap up their rejoinders, and October 17 would be the last date of hearings.

The judgement in the case is expected before Gogoi retires on November 17.

The top court had earlier said it would sit for an extra hour if required on any day, and urged the lawyers to assist it in the hearings.

On September 30, the top court had also postponed a clutch of petitions related to Jammu and Kashmir, saying the three-judge bench does not have time to hear so many matters. “We have the Constitution Bench case [Ayodhya dispute] to hear,” Gogoi had said.

The Ayodhya dispute has been going on for several decades, with both Hindu and Muslim groups claiming their right to the land. The Babri Masjid stood there before it was demolished in 1992 by Hindutva activists.

Now, follow and debate the day’s most significant stories on Scroll Exchange.