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Ayodhya's Split Verdict

by Vaidehi Sachin

 The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court has dismissed the petition of the Sunni Waqf Board and said that the disputed site was the birth of Lord Ram and holds immense importance for Hindus. 

Bringing to an end the suspense over the 60-year-old Ramjanm-bhoomi-Babri Masjid title suit case, the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court pronounced its verdict. The 2.7 acre area in Ayodhya has been divided into three parts. One area would go to the Nirmohi Akhara, one to Hindus and third to Muslims' Waqf Board. 

But the three-judge Bench comprising Justice SU Khan, Justice Sudhir Agarwal and Justice DV Sharma unanimously agreed that the particular area where the idols are installed is the birthplace of Lord Ram and would remain with the Hindus. This means that the idols will not be removed from the site and the Hindus are free to build a temple there. The parties have three months to appeal against the verdict. 

Today's judgment came after the last hurdle in its pronouncement was cleared by the Supreme Court Tuesday when it dismissed the petition by a retired bureaucrat Ramesh Chandra Tripathi for deferment of the keenly-awaited verdict. The Ayodhya dispute, which has been an emotive issue for decades and mired in a slew of legal suits involving Hindu and Muslim religious groups, dates back to the year 1528 when a mosque was built on the site by Mughal emperor Babar, which Hindus claim to be a birth place of Lord Ram and believe to be the spot where a Hindu temple existed since 11th Century.Verdict not a win or loss for anybody: RSS Welcoming the Allahabad High Court's verdict in the Ayodhya title suit in an unprecedented press conference, the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat on Thursday appealed all sections of society to exercise restraint and maintain calm. 

“The decision is not in favour of any political party or any particular community. The Allahabad High Court verdict on Ayodhya should not be seen as any body's victory or defeat. I appeal to the people of India to respect the judgement and maintain peace & harmony.” 

The RSS chief, although expressing satisfaction over the judgement, said that there would be an obvious sense of joy but that should be contained to maintain secular harmony. 
”The verdict has paved the way for the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya. We see this as this as a matter of faith of Hindus. Therefore, I invite all saints, people of India and even the Muslims to help build a Ram temple in Ayodhya,” the RSS chief said. 

He cautioned by saying that its time for everyone to forget the bitterness of past and all should come forward and demonstrate a national unity. He advised people that nothing should be done that intends to offend the sentiments of any particular community 
Meanwhile, reacting to the judgment BJP spokesman Prakash Javadekar said,”Today judgment of the Allahabad High Court is a positive development.” 

Senior counsel Ravi Shankar Prasad appearing for petitioner Acharya Dharmendra also hailed the verdict of the Allahabad High Court. 
Addressing a cluster of media persons, Prasad said, “The three member bench of the Allahabad High Court had ruled in favour of the Ram Lalla. The judges said with a majority vote that the disputed site belonged to Ram Lalla. The court also ruled that the idol of Lord Ram will not be removed from the place where prayers are held.” 

Prasad continued by saying, “The judges of the Allahabad High Court ruled by majority that the disputed land in Ayodhya be divided into three parts to be distributed among the Sunni Waqf Board, Nirmohi Akhara and the party for 'Ram Lalla'. 
He concluded by making an appeal to the Muslims of the country to respect the verdict and maintain calm. 

Now that the judgement of the Allahabad High Court, I want to make an appeal to the Muslims of India, not as the counsel of Acharya Dharmendra neither as the spokesman of the BJP, but as the citizen of India to respect the judgement and maintain calm.” 
Reacting to the judgement, Congress general secretary Janardan Dwivedi said, “People should respect the judgment but no attempts should be made to take political advantage of it.”
Not satisfied with Ayodhya verdict; will move SC: AIMPLB
Minutes after the announcement of the Ayodhya verdict, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board on Thursday expressed its dissatisfaction with the decision of the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad HC and decided to approach the Supreme Court. 

Speaking at the media gathering after the verdict, advocate for AIMPLB Zafaryab Jilani said, “No public resentment over the judgement is required over the verdict as AIMPLB has decided to move Supreme Court against it.” 

Jilani added that, “The decision should not be a reason for disappointment. We hope that people will maintain peace and tranquillity and the matter should not be taken to the streets.” 
He also said, “Two judges agreed that it was a mosque where namaz was being offered and the dispute is only about its construction date. This is why the court has handed one-third of the land to Waqf Board.” 

Replying to a question about moving to SC, Jilani said, “We have decided to move the Supreme Court but we are not in a hurry. It is a 8,500 page judgement and we will take time to read it and prepare the case. We will talk to Supreme Court lawyers before appealing in the Supreme Court.” 
Rejecting the Allahabad HC verdict, Jilani said, “We don't agree to one-third formula given by the High Court and that is why we are moving to Supreme Court. We appeal for the complete decree.” 

“SC's verdict will be completely acceptable to us”, he added. 
Regarding an out of court solution, Jilani said, “We are open for talks to anyone if a proposal comes but we will not accept surrender proposal as AIMPLB has already rejected it.” 
Delhi Jama Masjid's Imam Ahmed Bukhari also said that they will approach the apex court on the judgment.

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“The verdict has paved the way for the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya. We see this as this as a matter of faith of Hindus. Therefore, I invite all saints, people of India and even the Muslims to help build a Ram temple in Ayodhya,” the RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat.

“The three member bench of the Allahabad High Court had ruled in favour of the Ram Lalla. The judges said with a majority vote that the disputed site belonged to Ram Lalla. The court also ruled that the idol of Lord Ram will not be removed from the place where prayers are held.” Ravi Shankar Prasad.

BJP spokesman Prakash Javadekar said, “Today judgment of the Allahabad High Court is a positive development.”

Congress general secretary Janardan Dwivedi said, “People should respect the judgment but no attempts should be made to take political advantage of it.”

Advocate for AIMPLB Zafaryab Jilani said, “We have decided to move the Supreme Court but we are not in a hurry. It is a 8,500 page judgement and we will take time to read it and prepare the case. We will talk to Supreme Court lawyers before appealing in the Supreme Court.”

Delhi Jama Masjid's Imam Ahmed Bukhari said, “We will approach the apex court on the judgment.”


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