Amid the sharp heightening of tensions with regard to the decades-old Ayodhya Ram Mandir issue, and particularly, the Supreme Court's deprioritising of hearings in the case leading to calls for the government to step in, top sources in the establishment have indicated their displeasure with the judiciary to Republic TV.
"The court shouldn't force things that can't be implemented", top government sources said to Republic TV, adding that "it is Parliament which is supreme in the context of making laws".
While unspecific, the first part of the statement could feasibly pertain to at least a few recent developments. The most obvious one, where an apex court judgment wasn't implemented, arose in Kerala at Sabarimala where women between 10-50 years of age were blocked from entering the shrine and offering prayers despite the Supreme Court upholding their right to pray. Even as of Monday, when the Sabarimala Temple opened for just two days, no women have been able to make it to the temple despite at times being accompanied by a heavy police escort. Additionally, when it opened in October for five days, despite the Kerala government assuring all arrangements, large-scale protests were witnessed by groups that were adamant that women mustn't be allowed in.
While tussles between the Legislature and the Judiciary aren't infrequent, with recent back-and-forths over the appointment of Supreme Court judges as well as Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's "judiciary also needs long-term judicial statesmanship and to not be influenced by the events of the day" quote to Republic TV offering cases in point, in the current context, a face-off may potentially be over the Supreme Court deciding on matters that relate to religion.
A point that has been raised on numerous occasions following the Supreme Court deciding that the date of the Ayodhya case hearings would only be decided once an appropriate bench is convened in January is on the very nature of case itself. The batch of appeals against the Allahabad High Court verdict pertains to the case being one of land dispute. However, in the last week, there have been numerous statements from various groups regarding how the matter is one of faith and belief. In this light, there have been calls for the government to intervene, and either via ordinance or through legislation, bring in a law to allow the building of the Ram Mandir at the Ram Janmabhoomi site.
At the time of writing this article, there has been no official response from the Central government on the Ayodhya law demand.