Ram Janmabhoomi case hearing likely to be referred to a larger bench

Kenny Tucker
March 15, 2018

A special bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra, justices Ashok Bhushan and SA Najeeb accepted the argument that 'only original parties to the dispute are allowed to intervene in the case' and ' the intervention applications of unrelated persons be rejected'. How can we do this in a case like this, the Supreme Court said.

The Supreme Court, which commenced its hearing into the Ram Temple-Babri Masjid land dispute case on Wednesday, has held that Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramaniam Swamy can not intervene in the case.

The top court also barred BJP MP Subramanian Swamy from arguing in the said case.

The Supreme Court also rejected applications filed by 32 petitioners, including Shyam Benegal, Anil Dharkar and Teesta Setalvad, urging to put the 2.77 acre disputed land to "secular use" rather than religious, The Times of India reported.

The apex court had also directed its registry to provide copies of video cassettes, which were part of HC records, to parties on actual cost.

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It, however, allowed Swamy to mention his application seeking enforcement of his fundamental right to worship at the Ram temple in Ayodhya before an appropriate bench. The court has fixed the matter for further hearing on 23 March.

In this regard, Rajeev Dhawan, counsel for one of the appellants said, "The court will have to decide what is the meaning of a mosque". The court, however, ordered revival of Swamy's disposed of petition, wherein he had sought his fundamental right to worship at Ram temple.

Thousands of Hindu karsevaks had demolished the Babri mosque in Ayodhya on December 6, 1992.

A special bench of the top court headed by CJI Misra had earlier asked both the parties before the Allahabad High Court to file the English translation of documents exhibited by them. The court is hearing 13 appeals against a 2010 judgement by Allahabad High Court on four civil suits filed over the title of the land that is known to Hindus as the "Ram Janmabhoomi", or the land where Hindu God Lord Ram was born.

The Lucknow bench of Allahabad high court had ruled in favour of partitioning the land equally among three parties-the Sunni Waqf Board, Nirmohi Akhara and "Ram Lalla" (infant Lord Ram), represented by the Hindu Mahasabha.

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