Sunday, Dec 15, 2019 | Last Update : 06:58 PM IST

Supreme Court hearings on Ayodhya begin August 2

THE ASIAN AGE. | PARMOD KUMAR
Published : Jul 19, 2019, 2:13 am IST
Updated : Jul 19, 2019, 2:13 am IST

The outcome report by the mediation panel, the court said, should reach it by August 1, 2019, a day before the next date of hearing on August 2.

Supreme Court of India (Photo: PTI)
 Supreme Court of India (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: The Supreme Court will commence from August 2 hearing on the batch of cross-petitions challenging the September 30, 2010 Allahabad high court order giving two parts of the disputed site to the deity of Ram Lalla and Nirmohi Akhara, a Hindu sect, and one to the Sunni Waqf Board.

The Supreme Court on Thursday also asked the three-member mediation panel to submit the report on the outcome of its proceedings to find an amicable settlement of the dispute as on July 31, 2019.

The final hearing on Ayodhya title suit will take place nearly a decade after the court was moved in 2010 challenging the high court order splitting the disputed site in three equal parts. The lead petitioner, M. Siddiq, now represented by his legal heirs, had moved the petition in 2010 itself, while others followed him in 2011.

Referring to the report submitted by Justice Kalifulla on the “progress” and the “stage” of the ongoing mediation efforts, a five-judge Constitution Bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said: “Taking into account what has been brought to our notice by the said report, we now fix the hearing of the cases on and from 2.8.2019. The bench will assemble again on the said date, i.e. 2.8.2019, at 2 pm.”

The bench, also comprising Justices S.A. Bobde, D.Y. Chandrachud Ashok Bhushan and S. Abdul Nazeer, directed the court’s registry “to make the cases ready for hearing”.

The hearings may take place on a day-to-day basis as in its last July 11, 2019 order, the court, while seeking a report on the “progress” and the “stage” of mediation, had said: “We also make it clear that if this court comes to a conclusion that... the mediation proceedings should be ordered to be concluded, the court will do so and order for commencement of the hearing of the appeals before it, tentatively, on and from 25th July, 2019, which hearings, if required, will be conducted on a day-to-day basis.”

While fixing the date for the hearing of the petitions pending with court since 2010, it also asked the mediation panel to inform it about “the outcome of the mediation proceedings as on 31.7.2019” to enable it to proceed further in the matter in terms of its directions.

The outcome report by the mediation panel, the court said, should reach it by August 1, 2019, a day before the next date of hearing on August 2.

“We request the mediation panel to inform the court the outcome of the mediation proceedings as on 31.7.2019 by 1.8.2019 to enable us to proceed further in the matter in terms of the present directions”, the court said in its order on Thursday.

Justice Fakir Mohamed Ibrahim Kalifulla, a former Supreme Court judge, had submitted his report on the “progress” and the “stage” of the mediation on July 13, 2019, which the court refused to put on record citing its March 8, 2019 order holding that the proceedings of mediation will remain confidential. The court had barred the media from reporting the proceedings.

Besides Justice Kalifulla, other two members of the mediation panel are religious preacher Sr Sri Ravi Shankar and senior lawyer and well-known mediator Shriram Panchu.

Besides lead petitioner Siddiq, represented by his legal heirs, the Nirmohi Akhara, the UP Sunni Central Waqf Board, Bhagwan Shri Ram Virajman, All India Hindu Mahasabha’s Swami Chakrapani, the Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha, the Akhil Bharatiya Sri Ramjanam Bhoomi Punardhar Samiti and others have challenged the 2010 high court order on the title suit.

The court had set up a three-member committee on March 8 to hold talks with the parties to dispute to find an amicable solution of the dispute. The committee submitted its first report on the mediation on May 7, 2019 and had sought more time to complete the exercise.

The court had by its May 10 order given the committee further time till August 15, 2019  to complete the mediation. Justice Kalifulla had on May 7, 2019 sought extension of time till August 15, 2019 so that the mediation committee could complete the task of finding an amicable and lasting solution to the dispute.

Tags: supreme court, ayodhya case
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi