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M SIDDIQ (D) THR LRS VS MAHANT SURESH DAS & ORS

Legal Background

This is clear to all that the Ayodhya Ram Janmabhoomi controversy in the state of Uttar Pradesh was just a political conflict, not the judicial controversy. This was the Ram Janmabhoomi movement of the 1980s as it was about ascendant Hinduism seeking to stamp a secular republic. Dr. Ismail Faruqui had submitted a complaint in 1994 in the case of Ismail Faruqui v. Union of India[1] putting into doubt the legitimacy of the 1993 Ayodhya Act Acquisition of Other Land under which the Centre purchased 67,703 acres of land inside and around the Babri Masjid.

A five-judge Bench, in a plurality, upheld the acquisition stating that every measure taken to arrest the eruption of sectarian violence may be considered non-secular or against the principle of secularism, i.e. a philosophy of the Indian citizens rooted in ethic, through no scope of argumentation. Muslims are not necessary to have mosques for prayer, and they can give namaz anywhere in the open.

Likewise, in the case of Waqfs’ Sunni Central Board vs Gopal Singh Visharad[2], in 2010 Allahabad High Court’s Lucknow Bench ruled that Muslims and Hindus were the joint owner. In the 2:1 vote, it was maintained that the contested land should be split three-way – one-third for the Sunni Waqf Council, one-third for the Nirmohi Akhara and one-third for the ‘Ram Lalla’ faction. In an order stretching to more than 8,000 lines, the High Court stated that the section below the central dome belongs to Hindus, in which the idols of Lord Ram and other gods are installed in a temporary temple.

The three judges decided that the section under the central dome would be assigned to hindus. Equally for M.Siddiq (D) Thr. Lrs: Lrs. In 2018, vs. Mahant Suresh Das[3], the 2:1 majority Supreme Court held that there was no need to re-examine the 1994 judgment of the Supreme Court that a mosque was not required for Islam, and that the present case should be resolved on its own premises and would have no effect on it by the Ismail Faruqui judgment.

Historic Judgement By Supreme Court

In August 2019, the Supreme Court agreed to initiate a regular hearing in the politically volatile Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land conflict in Ayodhya despite the failure of attempts to find a peaceful solution through mediation. This took notice of the opinion of the three-member mediation committee led by FMI Kalifulla, the former Supreme Court judge, that the mediation proceedings which took place for around four months had not been concluded in full.

Upon hearing 40 days of all sides’ claims the Supreme Court agreed to postpone the decision. As for M.Siddiq (D) Thr in November 2019. Lrs: Lrs. Vs Mahant Suresh Das[4], the Supreme Court ruled that, as the ultimate arbiter, this Court will maintain the concept of equilibrium that the principles of one person do not clash with or overshadow the rights and convictions of another.

This eventually placed an end to the dispute over the Ayodhya Title and holding the Ram Mandir Reconstruction Trust should be granted the disputed ground. The Court directed the Sunni Waqf Board to set up a mosque with an appropriate 5-acre site, in an attempt to match the needs of all parties concerned. Yet the majority decision of 1045 pages in duration is ambiguous as to who composed it.

Each of the five judges published a separate but concomitant opinion as to whether the disputed system was the faith, conviction and trust of Lord Ram’s holy birthplace according to the Hindus.’ Notwithstanding this, the identity of the judge was not released. There is ample proof on the balance of probability to show that after the building of a grill-brick wall in 1857, worship of the Hindus proceeded unimpeded in the outer courtyard. Their ownership of the outer courtyard is developed along with the events linked to their court power.

With regard to the inner courtyard, there is proof of the preponderance of the Hindus’ chances of forming worship before the British invasion of Oudh in 1857. The Muslims gave no proof that they had been in exclusive control of the inner system from the date of building in the sixteenth century until 1857.

The three-way bifurcation of The High Court became constitutionally untenable. The remedy that commended itself to the High Court, except as a matter of preserving general harmony and tranquility, is not feasible. The contested land occupies about 1,500 square metres. The partitioning of the land does not meet either the interests of the parties or have a permanent sense of harmony and tranquility. The board of Sunni Central Waqf has not laid out the condition about its consumer involvement.

The Sunni Central Waqf Board did not determine the alternative claim of negative ownership, as it did not follow the adverse conditions of ownership. Since the Hindus were in the sole and unimpeded ownership of the outer courtyard where they resumed their worship, the Sunni Waqf Board cannot probably keep the property at question.

In violation of the status quo order and a promise issued to this tribunal, the mosque was demolished. The destruction of the mosque and the eradication of the Islamic ideology is an unacceptable violation of the rule of law.

Conclusion

A time arrives where the need for reconciliation and resolution goes above the desire to do away with an injustice. Obviously, the Supreme Court has chosen a direction that is most conducive to social unity by enabling a temple to appear at the contested site in Ayodhya through a government-appointed trust.

The court asked for the reservation of a five-acre plot of land elsewhere in Ayodhya that could be used to create a modern mosque to compensate Muslim litigants who had been robbed by an unconstitutional act of destruction of the centuries-old Babri Masjid. It is obvious that this is more a political reconciliation moral redress and less adjudication in protection a their religious rights[5].

In a divided political climate, the final award will still be a source of discomfiture for all of whom resolution goes beyond preserving stability. Yet in their unanimity, the most welcoming thing in a 1,045-page decision by a five-judge court. For it sends out a message that the judiciary has fought, with one eye, to offer legal burial to a lengthy dispute which began as a minor dispute, developed into a controversial political cause, and was a festering body-political wound for years. The fact that the case is actually finished would come as a huge relief to all the citizens who value justice.

  1. Ismail Faruqui v. Union of India AIR 1995 SC 605 A
  2. The Sunni Central Board of Waqfs vs Gopal Singh Visharad ECL 2010 9 1-2748.
  3. M.Siddiq (D) Thr. Lrs. vs Mahant Suresh Das 2018 SCC SC 3191.
  4. M.Siddiq (D) Thr. Lrs. vs Mahant Suresh Das 2019 SCC SC 1440.
  5. ‘Ayodhya Verdict LIVE: Supreme Court Ruling Has Heralded a New Dawn, Says PM Modi – The Economic Times’ accessed 17 November 2019.