Talking to the media ahead of the Supreme Court’s verdict in the Ayodhya land dispute case on Saturday, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari appealed for calm. He observed that everyone had faith in the judiciary. He not only opined that the verdict of the court should be respected but also stated that it was the responsibility of every Indian to ensure that peace was maintained.
Gadkari said, “In our democracy, all of us have faith in our judiciary. Today, there will be a verdict on the Ram Mandir issue. We should all accept the verdict of the Supreme Court. It is the responsibility of all the people to ensure that no untoward incident will happen and peace and tranquility will be maintained. And people should keep calm- that is my appeal to all.”
There has been a longstanding legal dispute about the ownership of land in Ayodhya, which is considered as the birthplace of Lord Ram. In the meanwhile, the Babri Masjid, which was constructed at that disputed site in the 16th century was demolished on December 6, 1992. The Allahabad High Court gave its judgement in 2010, partitioning the 2.77 acre land among the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla. 14 appeals were filed in the SC against the Allahabad High Court judgement. Ultimately, the Constitution bench of the SC, comprising of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer reserved its verdict on October 16, after hearing the matter continuously for 40 days. Earlier, in another development, the Ayodhya mediation panel headed by former SC Justice Kalifulla, senior advocate Sriram Panchu, and Sri Sri Ravi Shankar had submitted a report to the SC, outlining its proposals to solve the dispute. However, there was no conclusion.