Ayodhya title case

Supreme Court denies justice

Print edition : December 06, 2019

A photograph of the Babri Masjid from the early 1900s. Photo: The British Library Board

December 8, 1992: Idol of Ram and Hanuman at the makeshift temple in Ayodhya. Photo: THE HINDU ARCHIVES

Site plan of Babri Masjid so-called Ramjanamsthan chabutra submitted by Mahant Raghubar Das along with the plaint of suit no: 61/280 of 1885 (Mahant Raghubar Das vs Secretary of State and others) decided on December 24, 1885, by Sub-Judge, Faizabad.

Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi (centre) flanked by Justices Ashok Bhushan, S.A. Bobde, D.Y. Chandrachud and S. Abdul Nazeer after delivering the verdict on the Babri Masjid case in New Delhi on November 9. Photo: PTI

What right, power and jurisdiction has the apex court of a secular state to direct the government to construct the house of worship of any community? In doing so, the Supreme Court has gone beyond deciding the issue of title in a civil suit—it has descended into the arena of a communal conflict and stamped a blot on its reputation as it did in the habeas corpus case of 1976, and some others.
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