Supreme Court: The 5-judge bench of Ranjan Gogoi, CJ, S.A. Bobde, Dr. D.Y. Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S. Abdul Nazeer, JJ, has directed that disputed land to be given to Trust for construction of Ram Mandir, putting an end to decades of uncertainty ever since the Babri Mosque was demolished in 1992. It also directed that a suitable plot of 5 acres must be granted to Sunni Waqf Board to set up a Mosque. 

While reading out the verdict, CJI said that as per the testimony of Hindus & Muslims, both were offering prayers at the disputed site and that Sunni Waqf Board was not able to prove adverse possession over the disputed property.

Key takeaways from the verdict that was read out in Court Number 1 today:

  • Unanimous verdict
  • SLP filed by Shia Waqf Board challenging the order of 1946 Faizabad Court dismissed
  • Ram Janma Bhoomi not a juristic person but Ram Lalla is.
  • Babri Masjid was not built on a vacant land. There was an underlying non-Islamic structure as per ASI’s report.
  • Titles can’t be decided on faith and belief but on the claims. Historical accounts indicate the belief of Hindus that Ayodhya was the birthplace of Lord Ram.
  • Sunni Waqf Board can’t claim adverse possession.
  • There is no evidence that Muslims abandoned mosque.Hindus always believed birthplace of Lord Ram was in inner courtyard of mosque. Clearly established that Muslims offered prayer inside inner courtyard&Hindus offered prayers in outer courtyard.
  • Alternate site of 5 acres to be allotted to Muslims to construct mosque.
  • Disputed land to be given to Trust for construction of Ram Mandir.

Yesterday, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi held a meeting on Friday with Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary Rajendra Kumar Tiwari and state DGP Om Prakash Singh to take stock of law and order situation in the state.

Security arrangements have been beefed up across the country, especially in Ayodhya, in view of the impending judgment in the case. Section 144 has been imposed in the district till December 10. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had held a meeting on Thursday via video conferencing with all district magistrates and senior officials directing them to crack down on those trying to disrupt peace. He also asked the officials to stay alert and pro-active. The Uttar Pradeh government has ordered closure of all educational and training institutes till Monday.

Between August to October, the Supreme Court held a day-to-day hearing for 40 days on a batch of petitions challenging Allahabad High Court’s order trifurcating the 2.77 acres of the disputed land at Ayodhya into three equal parts to Ram Lalla, Sunni Waqf Board and Nirmohi Akhara. The 16th-century Babri Masjid was demolished on December 6, 1992.

(Watch this space for more details)

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