Deity Ramlalla Virajman, one of the parties in the Ayodhya land dispute case, on Saturday told the Supreme Court that the land adjacent to the site that was acquired by the Centre in 1993 would also be required for the “convenience of devotees” when a “grand temple” is built, The Indian Express reported. The deity’s counsel said that both the disputed site and the area acquired by the government were important for the Hindus, and asked the top court to not provide any relief to disturb the plan.

Lawyers K Parasaran, CS Vaidyanathan and PV Yogeswaran submitted that “the small area which is the subject matter of the suit is one integral unit and is indivisible”. “…there are no good ground for moulding the relief in any manner which will impact the entire acquired area including the disputed area being utilised in accordance with the wishes of the Hindus, if they succeed in these proceedings”.

The lawyers said that the basis of the suit filed by the deity is to build a “grand temple of Lord Ram” in proportion to the deity’s stature. They said that if equity was exercised in the case then it would affect the “sacredness of the place” which also has several other holy sites.

The lawyer, representing the government, reiterated that the disputed land was vested at present and said their action will be in support of the side that succeeded in the hearings.

The lawyers of the deity said the Muslim parties were no longer entitled to the land or equitable relief as the Babri Masjid did not exist anymore. They also said the Nirmohi Akhara should not be given the land as it had questioned whether the deity’s birthplace can be considered a juristic entity, according to NDTV. The Akhara also filed its written submission on Saturday.

“Ayodhya is a sacred place and it is a place of pilgrimage,” the lawyers’ affidavit said. “It is the faith of the Hindus that Ayodhya has divine and spiritual significance even in the absence of temple or idol. Reconstructing the mosque at the disputed site is inequitable, unjust and contrary to Hindu Dharma, Islamic Law and all principles of justice.”

Muslim parties submitted a relief to the top court on Saturday in a sealed cover, to which the lawyers for the Hindu side objected. The lawyers said that it encouraged addressing the court in secret while keeping other sides in the dark.

The submission of the deity also said the 2010 Allahabad High Court ruling had highlighted the significance of the disputed site for Hindus. They said that the Sunni Waqf Board’s counsel had clarified that the site became important for the Muslims “only when disputes arose in the 20th century”. “In fact, it was stated that the dispute now is of ‘VANITY’,” the submission added.

The five-judge Constitution Bench led by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi reserved its judgment on Wednesday after a marathon 40-day hearing. The top court allowed the parties to make the rest of the submissions in writing by Saturday.

The verdict is expected before Chief Justice Gogoi retires on November 17. The mediation panel had also filed a report in the top court in a sealed cover on the same day.

The daily hearings in the case began on August 6 after the mediation attempt failed. The top court, however, allowed the mediators – former Supreme Court judge FMI Kalifulla, religious leader Sri Sri Ravishankar, and senior advocate Sriram Panchu – to continue talks even as it started proceedings.

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Why is the Sunni Waqf board now ready to give up the Babri Masjid land for a Ram temple?

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