In a massive development in the ever-burning Ram Janmabhoomi issue, the Modi government has filed a petition in the Supreme Court to release the excess land around Ram Janmabhoomi.
According to sources, except the approximate 0.313-acre land which is ‘disputed’, the remaining 67-acre land which was acquired can be returned to the owners and it is the 67-acre land or so that the Modi government has sought to acquire through the petition.
Centre moves Supreme Court seeking permission for release of excess vacant land acquired around Ayodhya disputed site and be handed over to Ramjanambhoomi Nyas. Centre seeks direction to release 67 acres acquired land out of which 0.313 acres is disputed land. pic.twitter.com/1rAho51bUJ
— ANI (@ANI) January 29, 2019
The Modi government has said in its petition that Ram Janambhumi Nyas sought the return of excess land acquired in 1991 to original owners. The petition said that the Supreme Court in Ismail Faruqui judgment had the said government could consider returning 67-odd acres of acquired land surrounding the ‘disputed’ land after Allahabad High Court judgment on civil suits.
Recently, Prime Minister Modi, in an interview to Smita Prakash of ANI had made his intent to build the Ram Mandir clear by asserting that a move to bring in an ordinance would happen only after the Supreme Court takes its decision, hinting, that if the decision is adverse, the Modi government is probably going to overturn the verdict.
However, the Supreme Court has been more than slow in hearing the Ram Janmabhoomi case. Recently, the January 29th hearing in the Ram Janmabhoomi matter was delayed further because of the non-availability of Justice S A Bobde.
This is the second the time hearing in the long-delayed case has been postponed in this month. On January 8, CJI Ranjan Gogoi had formed the 5-judge bench for the case which included Justices S A Bobde, N V Ramana, UU Lalit and D Y Chandrachud apart from the CJI. But when the hearing started before the bench on January 10, Justice UU Lalit recused himself from the case. He had done so because advocate Rajiv Dhawan, who represents the Muslim side in the case, pointed it out that Justice Lalit had represented former UP CM Kalyan Singh, in contempt of court case twenty-four years ago. Although that case was not directly linked to the Ayodhya case, Justice Lalit had decided to recuse himself. Therefore, the hearing was adjourned till January 29.
In the meanwhile, Justice N V Ramana had also withdrawn from the case citing personal reasons. Ahead of the scheduled hearing, the CJI had reconstituted the bench on 25th, including Justices Ashok Bhushan and S A Nazeer in the bench to fill the two vacancies.