Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhavan, who has been representing the Sunni Waqf Board in the Ayodhya-Babri dispute case, filed a petition in the Supreme Court seeking action for criminal contempt against a Chennai-based professor. In the petition, Dhavan alleges that he was being threatened by the professor for appearing for Muslim parties in the Ayodhya case.
Dhavan mentioned in his petition that he had received a letter on August 14 penned by one professor named N Shanmugham, threatening him for appearing for the Muslim parties.
Shanmugham in his letter has allegedly accused the senior advocate of “betraying his faith” by appearing on behalf of the Muslims, fighting for their “so-called right in Ayodhya”. In the letter, the 88-year-old professor allegedly cursed the advocate and wrote that he “will pay for his blasphemy”.
The professor in his letter to the advocate allegedly wrote: “Hindus will not forgive you [Dhavan] for your present Role. If you have a conscience, recuse yourself immediately from (illegible) go back home and sit quietly ruling over your fate. Waiting for the lord’s judgment.
From Feb 1941 till today, I have chanted Gayatri Mantra 50 lakh times. From Sept 1958 till today, I have read Chapter 10 of GITA 27000 times. With that tongue, I curse you. Very soon my Lord will give you the punishment you deserve. You will live like a vegetable and a burden on Earth laughed and derided at by society. Your family shall perish without anyone to lit (sic) the fire.
That shall be the price you will pay for your blasphemy. I can’t but pity you. I am ashamed of you,” stated the petition.
Dhavan submitted that this is not an isolated instance of threats being made to him over his appearance in the Ayodhya case. He added that he had been also receiving intimidating messages on Whatsapp by one Sanjay Kalai Bajrangi. “It needs to be mentioned that the petitioner has been accosted both at home and in the court premises with intimidating behaviour by several people”, read the petition.
Notably, Rajeev Dhavan is the same advocate who had raised objections to the Constitution Bench hearing the Ayodhya case in a day-to-day format. Threatening to leave the case if the court continues to follow the five days a week hearing in the Ayodhya case, Dhavan had submitted before the court that he will “not be able to assist” the court if the hearing is “rushed through”.
The day to day hearing in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case began on August 6. The case is being heard by a 5 judge Constitutional bench comprising of Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and Abdul Nazeer.
The daily hearings were prescribed by the Constitutional bench on August 2 after taking note of the failed mediation by a three-member panel led by former Supreme Court judge FMI Kalifulla, also comprising of spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravishankar and senior advocate and renowned mediator Sriram Panchu.
The panel had said in its report that the Hindu and the Muslim parties had not been able to find a solution to the long-standing title suit.