Arguments by Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhawan on 2nd September (Day 17)
In a shocking twist in the Ayodhya case currently heard by the Supreme Court, on Monday, Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhawan who represents the Muslim parties in the issue has argued that no temple existed on the land before Babri Masjid was built. Dhawan has claimed that there is no evidence of a massive structure's existence on the land prior to Babri Masjid's construction. He has also claimed that the Archeological Survey of India was posed with the same question and there was no conclusive evidence to prove the same. The case has entered Day 17 of the daily hearings in the Supreme Court.
Dhawan receives death threats
Meanwhile, Dhawan himself has received death threats for appearing for Muslim parties in the Ayodhya case. This matter was mentioned to the CJI-led Supreme Court bench by his advocate Kapil Sibal on his behalf on Monday. Reportedly, Professor N Shanmugham has penned a letter threatening Dhavan for betraying his faith by representing the Muslim parties in the matter. The Supreme Court has agreed to listen to the matter on Tuesday.
Three-member mediation panel
The Supreme Court March 8, 2019, had appointed a three-member panel to mediate in the Ayodhya title suit case. The panel-led by retired Supreme Court justice Fakkir Kalifulla and also comprises Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and Sri Ram Panchu. The media was also barred from reporting on the mediation process in order to maintain confidentiality. Also, the panel was directed by SC to submit the report within eight weeks, the deadline of which culminated on May 3. The panel held its first sitting in March in Faizabad, Uttar Pradesh.
Earlier on July 31, the Ayodhya mediation panel was allowed to continue talks to reach consensus between Hindu and Muslim sides over the dispute of construction of Ram Temple in Ayodhya.
SC says mediation failed
Earlier on August 2, in a massive setback to the Ayodhya land dispute, the Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi had declared that the Ayodhya mediation panel has failed. He announced that day-to-day hearings will start from August 6. A day prior to this announcement, the three-member Ayodhya mediation panel submitted its status report to the Supreme Court in a sealed cover. This was in compliance with the orders of the apex court earlier on July 11.