In a nutshell: What the five-judge bench said in the landmark Ayodhya judgment

The SC judgment was pronounced by a Constitution Bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and comprising Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer.

Published: 09th November 2019 03:02 PM  |   Last Updated: 09th November 2019 09:12 PM   |  A+A-

File photo of the Ayodhya site (PTI)

By Online Desk

The Supreme Court on Saturday held that the entire disputed land of 2.77 acres in Ayodhya must be handed over for the construction of Ram Mandir and Muslims must be given alternate land measuring 5 acres for building a mosque.

Highlights of the judgment 

  • There was a structure underlying the Babri Masjid. This was not an Islamic structure.

  • Babri Masjid demolition an egregious violation of the rule of law. Wrong committed must be remedied.

  • The claim of Nirmohi Akhara is only of management. Nirmohi Akhara is not a 'Shebait' (manager of the shrine).

  • ASI refrained from recording a finding on whether the mosque was built after demolishing a Hindu temple

  • The finding of title cannot be based only on the expert report of ASI

  • Title to the land should be decided based on settled legal principles

  • Hindus believe that Lord Ram was born right below the central dome of the disputed structure

  • Muslims offered prayer inside the inner courtyard while the same was done by Hindus in the outer courtyard

  • Whether a belief is justified is beyond judicial inquiry. Once faith is established, courts should defer to it.

  • Title over land cannot be decided on the basis of faith and belief, but as per law

  • Muslims have not brought evidence to show possessory title, no evidence of Namaz by Muslims to the exclusion of Hindus

  • Hindus' possession of the outer courtyard stands established together with the incidents attaching to their control over it

  • The Muslims have offered no evidence to indicate that they were in exclusive possession of the inner structure prior to 1857

  • As regards the inner courtyard, there is evidence on a preponderance of probabilities to establish worship by Hindus prior to 1857

  • Clear evidence of Hindus worshipping at the outer courtyard despite setting up of a grill-brick wall in 1857

  • The disputed site spreads over 1500 sq yards. Dividing the land will not secure a lasting peace.

  • Trifurcation of the disputed land by the High Court was legally unsustainable

  • SC in the exercise of its powers under Article 142 of the Constitution must ensure that a wrong committed must be remedied

  • The Central government shall within a period of three months formulate a scheme pursuant to the powers vested in it under the Ayodhya Act 1993

  • The Constitution postulates the equality of all faiths 

  • Tolerance and mutual co-existence nourish the secular commitment of our nation and its people

  • Justice would not prevail if the SC were to overlook the entitlement of Muslims

  • Central government should within 3 months formulate a scheme envisaging setting up of a trust for possession of the disputed site

  • The scheme envisaging setting up of the Trust should provide for the construction of the temple

  • A suitable plot of land measuring 5 acres to be handed over to the Sunni Waqf Board either by the state government or the Centre  

  • Sunni Waqf Board at liberty to construct a mosque at the allotted land

WATCH | Ayodhya Verdict: Key highlights of the landmark judgment​

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