Legal news for the day.

The outcome of the long-standing legal contest over a place of worship, which occupies a special place in the hearts of two religious communities, climaxed on August 5, 2020. Amidst sacred ceremonies, the chanting of mantras and performance of the bhoomi pujan by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Ram Mandir shilanyas was finally solemnised in Ayodhya, UP. The Prime Minister stated that a wait of centuries had ended and that India was creating a golden chapter in Ayodhya.

For over 28 years, the 1,500-sq-yard plot had witnessed a prolonged legal tussle. Religious groups, devotees and their legal teams contested for ownership of the sacred spot. From lower courts to the apex court , the case wound its way up. In the process, many Hindu and Muslim petitioners rallied along and the ensuing legal wrangle made the case increasingly complicated. Successive courts pronounced divergent verdicts on the Ram JanmabhoomiBabri Masjid case. Finally on November 9, 2019, the Supreme Court announced its verdict and awarded the disputed place to Hindus to build the Ram Janmabhoomi Temple. The AIMPLB was given an alternative 5 acre piece of land away from the site, to build a mosque. The judgment led to an uneasy situation.

At the centre of the row was a 16th-century mosque, apparently built during the reign of Babur. The disputed site was revered by Hindus as the birthplace of Lord Rama. The Muslim community held that they had worshipped in the mosque for generations, and hence, it rightfully belonged to them. They also stated that there was no transfer of land ownership right.

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