Neswdelhi:9/11/19:In a unanimous verdict, the Supreme Court today paved the way for the construction of a Ram Temple at the disputed site at Ayodhya. It also directed the Centre to allot an alternative five-acre plot to the Sunni Waqf Board for building a mosque at a prominent place in the holy town. In one of the most important judgments in Indian history, a five-judge Constitution Bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi put an end to the more than a century-old dispute.
The court in it’s over one-thousand-page verdict said the faith of the Hindus that Lord Ram was born at the demolished structure is undisputed. It ordered a trust should be formed within three months for the construction of the temple at the site.
The bench, also comprising Justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer, said possession of the disputed 2.77 acre-land rights will be handed over to the deity Ram Lalla, who is one of the three litigants in the case. The possession, however, will remain with a Central Government Receiver. The historic verdict was pronounced on 14 appeals filed in the apex court against the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment.
The court said the Hindus have established their case that they were in possession of the outer courtyard and the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board has failed to establish its case.
The court said the extensive nature of Hindus worshipping at the outer courtyard at the disputed site has been there and the evidence suggests the Muslims offered Friday prayers at the mosque which indicates that they had not lost possession of the site. It said that despite obstruction caused in offering prayers at Mosque, the evidence suggests that there was no abandonment in offering prayers.
The court further said the underlying structure below the disputed site at Ayodhya was not an Islamic structure, but the Archaeological Survey of India, ASI has not established whether a temple was demolished to build a mosque. It said that terming the archaeological evidence as merely an opinion would be a great disservice to the ASI.
The court also said that the Hindus consider the disputed site as the birthplace of Lord Ram and even Muslims say this about that place. The bench said the existence of Sita Rasoi, Ram Chabutra and Bhandar grih are the testimony of the religious fact of the place. The court further said, however, that the title cannot be established on the ground of faith and belief and they are only indicators for deciding the dispute.
The Apex Court dismissed the appeal of the Shia Waqf Board in the case saying that the land belongs to the government as per revenue records.