AYODHYA – Just a day ahead of the 25th anniversary of the Babri Masjid demolition in Ayodhya on December 1992, the Supreme Court of India is set to begin final hearing in the politically controversial Babri Masjid-Ram temple dispute case.
A special bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice S Abdul Nazeer will assemble at 2pm on December 5, Tuesday, to begin hearing a total of 13 appeals filed against the 2010 judgement of the Allahabad high court in four civil suits.
The high court had then ruled a three-way division of the disputed 2.77-acre area at Ayodhya among the parties — the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and the deity Ram Lalla (Ram as an infant).
Contesting parties, including the Uttar Pradesh government, are likely to make their opening statements on Tuesday.
Recently a group of civil rights activists also moved the apex court seeking intervention in the Ayodhya dispute and urged it to consider the issue saying it is not just a dispute over property but has several aspects that would have far-reaching effects on the “secular fabric of the country.”
Since September 2010, over 20 appeals and cross-appeals have been filed in the SC without making any significant headway.
In pursuance of the SC’s earlier direction, the Yogi Adityanath government has submitted English translation of exhibits and documents likely to be relied upon, as these were in eight different languages.
The SC on August 11 asked the UP government to complete within 10 weeks the translation of the evidence recorded for adjudication of the title dispute in the HC. It had said it would not allow the matter to take any shape other than the civil appeals and would adopt the same procedure as was done by the high court.