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Ayodhya case: SC grants time till August 15 to three-member mediation committee to find solution

The top court began hearing the case Friday morning -- after a gap of over two months. The apex court on March 8 had referred the matter to mediation for exploring the possibility of an amicable settlement.

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk
New Delhi Updated on: May 10, 2019 11:35 IST
The court constituted a three-member mediation committee,
Image Source : FILE/PTI

The court constituted a three-member mediation committee, tasked with exploring the possibility of an amicable settlement in the decades-old, politically sensitive, Ayodhya's Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case.

The Supreme Court on Friday granted time till August 15, 2019 to the three-member mediation committee headed by former apex court judge FMI Kalifulla to decide on the Ram Janmbhoomi-Babri Masjid title dispute matter.

The top court began hearing the case Friday morning -- after a gap of over two months. The apex court on March 8 had referred the matter to mediation for exploring the possibility of an amicable settlement.

As per reports, the hearing lasted for only six minutes.

Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, in the hearing, said: "We are not going to tell you what progress has been made; that’s confidential."

"If the mediators are optimistic about the result and are seeking time till August 15, what is the harm in granting time? This issue has been pending for years and years. Why should we not grant time," the bench also comprising Justices SA Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer told the counsel appearing for the parties.

The counsel appearing for both the Hindu and Muslim parties expressed confidence over the ongoing mediation proceedings and said they were fully cooperating with the process.

The court had constituted a three-member mediation committee and tasked it with exploring the possibility of an amicable settlement in the decades-old, politically sensitive, Ayodhya's Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case. The committe submitted its interim report in a sealed cover.

Sources aware of the development said the interim report was filed with the apex court registry on May 6.

The court had appointed former apex court judge FMI Kalifulla, spiritual guru and founder of Art of Living foundation Sri Sri Ravishankar and senior advocate Sriram Panchu, a renowned mediator, as members of the mediation committee.

A five-judge Constitution bench comprising Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer perused the report.

Fourteen appeals have been filed in the apex court against the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment, delivered in four civil suits, that the 2.77-acre land in Ayodhya be partitioned equally among the three parties -- the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla.

The panel was constituted after the court said there was a lack of consensus between the parties in the matter".

On December 6, 1992, the Babri Masjid, constructed at the disputed site in the 16th century by Shia Muslim Mir Baqi, was demolished.

(With inputs from agencies)

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