Disputed Ayodhya land to be divided into three parts

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Allahabad, Sept, 30 (Agencies): The Allahabad HC today in the Ayodhya land title case has ordered that the disputed holy site in Ayodhya be divided into three parts: one-third for Hindu Mahasabha, one-third for Sunni Waqf Board and one-third for the Nirmohi Akhara.

The court ruled that the land on which the idol of Lord Rama stood belonged to the Hindus and part of the land under the central dome of the Babri Masjid was the Ram Janamsthan which will go to the Hindus.

The court has also ruled that the site will be in status quo for the next three months.

The three-member bench of the Allahabad High Court, comprising justices SU Khan, Sudhir Agarwal and DV Sharma today delivered a split verdict in 60-year old Ayodhya title suit.

The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court Thursday decided by majority that the site where a makeshift Ram Lalla temple exists is where Hindu god Ram was born, lawyer Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

The Allahabad High court has dismissed the Wakf board`s plea. There is no dispute on the fact of that it was Ram`s birthplace. The Ayodhya land willbe divided into three parts.

Earlier, the Supreme Court had deferred its ruling on the pronouncement of the Ayodhya verdict by the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court.
The verdict on ownership of the religious site was to have come on Sept. 24 from the lower court in Uttar Pradesh, but the top court suspended that imminent verdict last week, responding to arguments that a chance should be given to reconciliation in the 60-year-old case.

The court also issued notice to all the parties to the title suit and asked Attorney General Goolam Vahanvati to be present in the court when the case is heard.

The ruling followed a petition by retired bureaucrat Ramesh Chandra Tripathi seeking postponement of the high court verdict at least until the end of the Oct 3-14 Commonwealth Games. It sought the court`s direction to the parties to explore possibilities of an out of court amicable settlement.

There was a divergence of views in the apex court bench of Justices R.V. Ravindran and H.L. Gokhale. According to the bench, while one member felt that the special leave petition be dismissed, another was of the view that notice be issued and the order stayed.

Under the convention, when one member of the bench favours the issuance of notice though the other member of the bench disagrees, notices are issued. Stating this, Justice Ravindran passed the order staying the pronouncement of the Ayodhya verdict by a week and issue of notice to all parties to the suit.
Lawyers of both sides in the case – Hindu and Muslim litigants – welcomed the Supreme Court decision, saying a verdict in the case could not be put off indefinitely as the chances of a reconciliation after years of litigation were slim.

“Right now there is no possibility. Any reconciliation will happen only after the … judgement,” Zafaryab Jilani, lawyer of the Sunni Central Board of Waqf, the Muslim litigants, said.

Tripathi`s petition was turned down by the three-judge special bench of the Allahabad High Court last week. While two judges S.U. Khan and Sudhir Agrawal rejected the application, the third judge, Dharam Veer Sharma, allowed the plea, following which Tripathi chose to move the apex court.
The Allahabad High court will rule on Thursday whether Hindus or Muslims own land around a demolished mosque in Ayodhya, a judgement haunted by memories of 1992 riots that killed some 2,000 people.
Those riots were some of the country`s worst religious violence since Partition in 1947 and a verdict on the case may spark more disturbances between India`s majority Hindus and minority Muslims.
The verdict will add to the security worries of the government, which already has its hands full dealing with the preparations for the Commonwealth Games that are bedeviled by concerns over filthy accommodation and health and security.
The case over the 16th century Babri mosque in Uttar Pradesh`s Ayodhya town is one of the biggest security challenges in India this year, along with a Maoist insurgency and a Kashmiri separatist rebellion, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said.
Hindus and Muslims have quarrelled for more than a century over the history of the Babri mosque.
Hindus claim that the mosque stands on the birthplace of their god-king Rama, and was built after the destruction of a Hindu temple by a Muslim invader in the 16th century.
The dispute flared up in 1992 after a Hindu mob destroyed the mosque and nearly 2,000 were killed in rioting between Hindus and Muslims across the country.
 

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