Ayodhya Verdict: In one of the most keenly awaited verdicts in India’s history, the Supreme Court on Saturday paved the way for construction of a Ram Temple at the disputed site in Ayodhya. The judgment, in the decades old Ram Janmbhoomi-Babri Masjid title suit, was delivered by a 5-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and comprising Justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer.
The apex court bench directed the Centre to allot 5-acre plot to the Sunni Waqf Board for building a mosque elsewhere in the town while asking it to form a trust within three months which will look after the process of construction of a temple at the disputed 2.77-acre site in Ayodhya. The Supreme Court added that the possession of the disputed 2.77 acre, however, will remain with a central government receiver.
The top court underlined that the UP Sunni Central Waqf Board has failed to establish its case in Ayodhya dispute. It added that the Archaeological Survey of India has established that temple existed beneath the destroyed structure, but it was not clear whether the temple was demolished to build the mosque.
CJI Gogoi had reserved the verdict in the decades-old case on October 16 after hearing the matter on a day-to-day basis since August 6. Regular hearings in the matter began after the mediation panel set up by the Supreme Court failed to come out with any resolution. The panel included former Justice FMI Kallifulla, spiritual guru and founder of the Art of Living foundation Sri Sri Ravishankar and senior advocate and renowned mediator Sriram Panchu.
In 2010, the Allahabad High Court in its verdict had said that the disputed 2.77-acre land in Ayodhya be divided equally among the three parties in the case – the Nirmohi Akhara, Ram Lalla and the Sunni Waqf Board. However, the judgment was challenged in the Supreme Court.