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Supreme Court extends mediation in Babri Masjid case till August 15

The court said the members of the committee were not experiencing any difficulty in the mediation process

Friday May 10, 2019 11:16 AM, & Agencies

Babri Masjid Case

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday extended the mediation committee in Babri Masjid, Ayodhya case till August 15. The court also said the members of the committee were not experiencing any difficulty in the mediation process.

The court observed that the Chairman of the committee, Justice F.M.I. Kalifulla, had indicated progress in mediation so far and sought extension of time to complete the task.

The court refused to divulge the details on the mediation efforts.

"We will not tell you the progress made, that is confidential," replied the court to a counsel's query regarding the mediation. The court observed that the mediation process can be also extended, if required.

The court's observation came after a report was submitted on the mediation efforts.

The matter will come for the first time on Friday since March 8 order when the apex court had referred the decades-old politically sensitive case for mediation by a panel headed by former apex court judge F M I Kalifulla for exploring the possibility of an amicable settlement.

The other members of the Ayodhya dispute mediation panel included Hindu guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and Senior Advocate Sriram Panchu.

"The process should be done with “utmost confidentiality,” and should be concluded in eight weeks. The first status report is to be submitted in four weeks", the five-judge bench headed by CJI Gogoi said.

The Supreme Court of India had on February 26 said that it will explore mediation to end the Ayodhya disput even if there is a slightest chance of success.

The apex court batted for mediation to resolve the Ayodhya dispute saying it could only decide on property and what it was looking at was “a possibility of healing relationships”.

Babri Masjid, the historic mosque believed to be built by Mir Baqi, one of the commanders of Mughal Emperor Babur, was thrown into a controversy as a result of India's communal politics. It was at last demolished in broad daylight on December 06, 1992 by Hindu extremists in the presence of top RSS, BJP, VHP, Bajrang Dal and other right wing groups' top leadership. They now want to build a "grand Ram mandir" on the site.

Following a lenghty judicial battle, the Allahabad High Court had in a verdict pronounced in 2010 equally divided the 2.77 acres of land between Ram Lalla, Sunni Wakf Board and Nirmohi Akhara. Hindus and Muslims however have both challenged the HC verdict in the Supreme Court.

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