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Top Court presses for Mediation in Ayodhya Title Dispute Case; To Decide on March 5

The Supreme Court on Tuesday observed while hearing the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid Case that it is not a case of Private Property. SC added, ‘It (The Title Dispute Case) has become so contentious. We are re seriously giving a chance for mediation’, Top Court said.

The Five Judge Bench led by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi further said it will pass an order on next Tuesday on whether the case may be sent for court-monitored mediation to save time.

Justice Bobde further said that ‘even if there is only a 1% chance of Mediation, it should be explored”

However, the Hindu parties represented by Senior Counsel C S Vaidyanathan and Ranjit Kumar were not open to the idea of mediation. The Muslim groups represented by Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhawan expressed their willingness for mediation if the Court directed so.

“Mediation is not possible, not agreeable. Your Lordships may decide the matter as early as possible”, says senior advocate Ranjit Kumar.

The hearing was adjourned for six weeks to enable the parties to examine the translations of records prepared by the UP Government. As the Outset, CJI led Bench said that hearing will only be commenced if parties accept the translations prepared by UP Government as authentic.

The report submitted by the Secretary-General to the Court was read out by the CJI Ranjan Gogoi to the parties, which indicated that the records ran into nearly 38,000 pages, in the languages of English, Hindi, Sanskrit, Urdu and Gurumukhi.

While Senior Advocate C S Vaidyanathan, who appeared for Ram Lalla, endorsed the authenticity of translations, Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhawan, who appeared for Sunni Waqf Board, objected.

“We have not got the opportunity to examine the translations prepared by UP Government”, said Dhawan.

The Ayodhya Dispute title case deals with who owns the controversial land where Babri Masjid once stood and where Lord Ram Believed to have been born.

The Allahabad High Court in 2010 verdict had divided the land between three petitioners — two favoured building a Ram Mandir at the Ayodhya site while the third wanted the Babri Masjid rebuilt.

All the petitioners appealed against the Allahabad High Court verdict. The Supreme Court has begun hearing those appeals.

READ: CJI Ranjan Gogoi constitutes new bench to take on Ayodhya Title Dispute Case; hearing on Jan 29

Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi had on Jan 25 reconstituted the 5 Judge Bench and inducted lone Muslim Judge S Abdul Nazir. Five-judge bench led by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi includes –  Justice SA Bobde, Justice NV Ramana, Justice UU Lalit and Justice DY Chandrachud.

The new Bench was necessitated after Justice U U Lalit recused from the case on January 10. This was followed by Justice N V Ramana withdrawing citing personal reasons. Judge UU Lalit on January 10  left the case saying ‘He was a lawyer in the case earlier’.

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