CJI Gogoi reconstitutes Ayodhya bench; two judges added

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, IndiaUpdated: Jan 25, 2019, 07:00 PM IST
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File photo the Supreme Court of India. Photograph:(WION)

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The court had resumed the hearing in the case in 2017 after a break of around seven years. 

Chief Justice of India(CJI) Ranjan Gogoi today reconstituted the Ayodhya dispute bench including Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice Abdul Nazeer. 

The hearing of the case was adjourned on January 10th Justice UU Lalit had recused himself from the case. Justice Lalit's recusal occurred after senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for a Muslim party, told a bench that Justice Lalit had appeared for former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh in 1994.

Although Dhawan hadn't demanded Justice Lalit's recusal but he told Chief Justice Gogoi and other members of the bench to step out of the bench.

The five-judge bench will now constitute of CJI Gogoi, Justice SA Bobde, Justice DY Chandrachud, Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice Abdul Nazeer. The court will hear the case on January 29th.

The court had directed its registry to go through all the records relating to the Ayodhya case which are available with it and submit a report by January 29 as to how much time it would require for translating the documents and the case material which are in Persian, Arabic, Urdu and Gurmukhi languages. 

The court had resumed the hearing in the case in 2017 after a break of around seven years. 

The court had earlier rejected the proposal for sending the title case for a larger bench and also refused to reconsider its 1994 verdict in which it had observed that a "mosque is not an essential part of the practice of the religion of Islam and namaz by Muslims can be offered anywhere, even in open".

In 2010, the Allahabad High Court had accepted that the disputed site was the birthplace of Lord Ram and had given two-thirds of it to the Hindus. The rest of the site was given to the Sunni Waqf Board. 

The order was appealed by both Hindu and Muslim groups in the Supreme Court — as many as 14 appeals were filed — which stayed the order in 2011.