The mediation process in the Ayodhya temple-mosque case having failed, the Supreme Court will commence day-to-day hearing in the matter from August 6, 2019 to find a way out in the decades-old dispute. “The mediation panel has not been able to reach any final settlement,” the Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi said on Friday.
The top court had on July 18 directed that mediation in the case be concluded by July 31 and appeals be listed on August 2 so the court can draw up a schedule for hearing the case.
On March 8, the court had directed all sides to the suit to try and resolve the contentious issue by way of an out-of-court mediation. For this purpose, the court had formed a panel of Justice Kalifulla, spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and senior advocate and mediation expert Sriram Panchu and it was asked to submit its final report to court.
The court’s July 11 order for a report was prompted by an application filed by Gopal Singh Visharad, an original claimant to the dispute, who filed a title suit way back in 1950, through his survivor Rajendra Singh on July 9 claiming that the mediation was making no progress. The application urged the court to stop mediation and start adjudication on the pending appeals.
The final negotiations were taking place since July 29 where Muslim clerics, legal representatives of the Muslim and Hindu litigants held talks with the mediation panel. It was not immediate clear what were the sticking points that led to the derailment of the talks.
—India Legal Bureau