The Supreme Court on Tuesday said that it will pass an order on March 5 if the Ayodhya case may be sent for court-monitored mediation to save time. The next hearing has been deferred for eight weeks, which would be consumed by the parties in vetting the translated documents, could be utilised for mediation. Ram Temple is not a dispute over private property. “This issue has become so contentious and we are seriously giving a chance for mediation," said Justice Bobde who was hearing the matter. “Even if there is only one per cent chance of mediation between parties, we should give it an opportunity," he said. The Supreme Court is hearing the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case. The previous hearing on January 29 was postponed as Justice SA Bobde of the five-judge Constitution bench was not leave.
Senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan who was representing the Muslim litigant, however, said that his client was open to mediation. “If your Lordships want to try it, I won’t oppose it,” he said.
The bench also comprises Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Ashok Bhushan, Abdul Nazeer and DY Chandrachud. As many as 14 appeals have been filed in the Supreme Court against the Allahabad High Court judgment in 2010, which was delivered based on four suits.
On Monday, BJP leader Subramanian Swamy mentioned before the Supreme Court his plea that he has a fundamental right to offer prayers at the disputed site in Ayodhya. However, the bench asked him to be present in court on Tuesday.
Earlier, Centre had moved the Supreme Court and sought permission from the top court to return all 67-acre surplus land at the site. The government asked the Supreme Court to lift the status quo on non-disputed land. The government asked the top court to allow it to hand over part of the land that is not under dispute to Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas. The government's petition comes after the Ayodhya case hearing was cancelled because of the non-availability of Justice SA Bobde.
Earlier, BJP president Amit Shah parties like BSP, SP and Congress should make their stand clear on the issue. “BJP's stand is clear that Ram Temple will be built in that very place in Ayodhya. SP, BSP and Congress should clear their agenda, whether they want the construction of Ram Mandir or not,” Shah said.