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Ayodhya Land Dispute: Mediation Process To Continue Till July 31, Next Hearing On August 2

The Supreme Court will next hear the Ayodhya land dispute case on August 2.

Ayodhya Land Dispute: Mediation Process To Continue Till July 31, Next Hearing On August 2
File photo of the 16th century mosque, Babri Masjid.
Ayodhya Land Dispute: Mediation Process To Continue Till July 31, Next Hearing On August 2

The Supreme Court on Thursday said the mediation process in the Ayodhya land dispute case will continue till the July 31 and requested the concerned committee to inform the court about the outcome of its progress the same day.

The Chairman of the Ayodhya Mediation Committee, Justice Kalifulla, submitted the report to the court on Thursday after which CJI Ranjan Gogoi-led bench said set August 2 as the next date of hearing.

"However, taking into account what has been brought to our notice by the said report, we now fix hearing of the case, if required on and from August 2," the bench, also comprising justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S A Nazeer, said.

The bench also took into account an application filed by one of the parties pointing to discrepancies in the translated copies of the records related to the case.

The apex court also said it will decide the future course of action keeping in mind the mediation report, the content of which will remain confidential.

The court had on July 11 sought a report on the mediation process and said that a day-to-day hearing might commence from July 25 if the court decides to conclude the mediation proceedings.

It had requested Justice (Retd) F M I Kalifulla to apprise it by July 18 of the progress of mediation till date and its present stage.

It had passed the order while hearing an application filed by a legal heir of one of the original litigants, Gopal Singh Visharad, seeking a judicial decision on the dispute and conclusion of the mediation process, alleging that not much was happening there.

The panel, also comprising spiritual guru and founder of the Art of Living foundation Sri Sri Ravishankar and senior advocate and renowned mediator Sriram Panchu, was earlier granted time till August 15 by the apex court for completion of mediation after its earlier report had said that the mediators were "optimistic" about an amicable solution.

The top court had fixed the seat for the mediation process in Faizabad of Uttar Pradesh, around 7 km from Ayodhya, and said adequate arrangements, including those related to the venue of the mediation, place of stay of the mediators, their security and travel, should be arranged forthwith by the state government so that the proceedings could commence immediately.

The bench was earlier told by Hindu bodies, except the Nirmohi Akhara, and the Uttar Pradesh government that they were not in favour of the court's suggestion for mediation. The Muslim bodies had supported the proposal.

Fourteen appeals have been filed in the apex court against the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment, delivered in four civil suits, that the 2.77-acre land in Ayodhya be partitioned equally among the three parties -- the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla.

On December 6, 1992, the Babri Masjid, constructed at the disputed site in the 16th century by Shia Muslim Mir Baqi, was demolished.

(With inputs from PTI)

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