An exterior view of Babri Masjid
An officer from the Border Security Force guarding Babri Masjid | Robert Nickelsberg | Liaison
Text Size:

New Delhi: The Supreme Court Thursday directed the mediation panel in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title dispute case to submit a status report by 18 July about the progress made.

If the three-member panel of mediators led by former apex court judge F.M. Ibrahim Kalifulla reports an unfavourable progress and seeks the conclusion of the mediation, the top court will pass appropriate orders on 25 July to start hearing the appeals in this matter on a day-to-day basis, said the court.

The direction was issued by a five-judge Constitution Bench comprising Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, along with Justices S.A. Bobde, D.Y. Chandrachud, Ashok Bhusan and S. Abdul Nazeer.

The move came on the heels of a plea filed by a litigant who said there could be no “headway” in the mediation process and that judicial adjudication is the “only solution”.

Also read: What about Babri Masjid? How land became more important than the mosque in Ayodhya

‘Political suggestions’

Gopal Singh Visharad, the first litigant in the Ayodhya civil dispute case, filed a plea Monday, stating that suggestions made during the meetings were “political in nature”.

“During the meetings, suggestions have been made which are not even within the scope of the present mediation in any way and are political in nature,” he said.

We are deeply grateful to our readers & viewers for their time, trust and subscriptions.

Quality journalism is expensive and needs readers to pay for it. Your support will define our work and ThePrint’s future.


“This has convinced the applicant herein that mediation would not yield any fruitful result and the only solution is judicial adjudication,” Visharad added.

Mediation panel

The three-member panel also comprises spiritual leader and founder of Art of Living Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and senior advocate Sriram Panchu.

The Supreme Court had, in March this year, referred the matter for mediation and tasked the panel with doing the job. The panel had been directed to conduct the proceedings with “utmost confidentiality”.

In May, the top court granted the panel additional time to complete the mediation.

Since the Ayodhya dispute first surfaced in 1855, at least nine attempts have been made to mediate in the case, of which three were initiated by prime ministers Chandra Shekhar, P.V. Narasimha Rao and Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

Also read: An IAS officer writes about how he rebuilt Ayodhya after Babri Masjid demolition


Subscribe to our channels on YouTube & Telegram

News media is in a crisis & only you can fix it

You are reading this because you value good, intelligent and objective journalism. We thank you for your time and your trust.

You also know that the news media is facing an unprecedented crisis. It is likely that you are also hearing of the brutal layoffs and pay-cuts hitting the industry. There are many reasons why the media’s economics is broken. But a big one is that good people are not yet paying enough for good journalism.

We have a newsroom filled with talented young reporters. We also have the country’s most robust editing and fact-checking team, finest news photographers and video professionals. We are building India’s most ambitious and energetic news platform. And we aren’t even three yet.

At ThePrint, we invest in quality journalists. We pay them fairly and on time even in this difficult period. As you may have noticed, we do not flinch from spending whatever it takes to make sure our reporters reach where the story is. Our stellar coronavirus coverage is a good example. You can check some of it here.

This comes with a sizable cost. For us to continue bringing quality journalism, we need readers like you to pay for it. Because the advertising market is broken too.

If you think we deserve your support, do join us in this endeavour to strengthen fair, free, courageous, and questioning journalism, please click on the link below. Your support will define our journalism, and ThePrint’s future. It will take just a few seconds of your time.

Support Our Journalism

Share Your Views


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here