The bench asked whether Muslims can seek a decree of declaration with regard to the disputed property even after the demolition of the alleged mosque on December 6, 1992.
A “historical wrong” was committed by victorious emperor Babur by constructing a mosque at the birthplace of Lord Ram in Ayodhya which needed to be rectified now, a Hindu party said in the Supreme Court on Tuesday in the Ram Janmbhoomi-Babri masjid land dispute case. A 5-judge Constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, was told by former Attorney General and senior advocate K Parasaran, appearing for a Hindu party, that there were several mosques in Ayodhya where Muslims can pray but Hindus cannot change the birth place of Lord Ram.
Parasaran, appearing for Mahant Suresh Das, who is a defendant in a law suit filed by Sunni Waqf Board and others, said that emperor Babur conquered India and committed a historical wrong by constructing a mosque at the birthplace of Lord Ram by placing himself above the law. The bench, also comprising justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S A Nazeer, asked several questions to Parasaran on legal issues like law of limitation, doctrine of adverse possession and questions as to how Muslims are ousted from seeking title over 2.77 acre disputed land at Ayodhya.
The bench asked whether Muslims can seek a decree of declaration with regard to the disputed property even after the demolition of the alleged mosque on December 6, 1992. “They say, once a mosque always a mosque, do you support this, the bench asked Parasaran. “No. I do not support it. I will say once a temple always a temple,” Parasaran replied. The bench said that it has been argued by the Muslim parties that they can seek a decree of declaration for the property even if the building in question was no more in existence. After the bench asked a volley of questions to Parasaran, the CJI said: “Mr Dhavan are we asking sufficient number of questions to the Hindu parties now.”
The observation assumes significance as senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for the Muslim parties, had alleged on Monday that questions are asked only from them and not posed to the Hindu side during the hearings in the Ram Janmbhoomi-Babri masjid land dispute case. “Your Lordship didn’t ask question to the other side. All the questions have been asked to us only. Of course, we are answering them,” Dhavan had said yesterday.
The arguments in the Ayodhya land dispute are continuing on 39th day and will resume after the lunch break. 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.