Verdict delivered, not justice: CPI(M) on SC's Ayodhya judgment

New Delhi, Nov 18 (PTI) The CPI(M) on Monday said the Supreme Court judgment on Ayodhya had given precedence to the faith and beliefs of one side and while the verdict was 'delivered', justice was not.

The apex court's November 9 verdict allowed Hindus to build a Ram temple on the disputed plot in Ayodhya, while asking the central and Uttar Pradesh governments to give the Sunni Waqf Board an alternative five-acre plot in the Hindu holy town.

'We have always maintained that the resolution of the dispute must be through a negotiated settlement, failing which, the only way is to resolve the matter through a court verdict. This is the only manner in which a secular republic governed by the rule of law can deal with such a dispute. The verdict has now been delivered, not justice. There are, however, certain premises of the judgment that raise serious questions.

'...the end result of the verdict has given precedence to the faith and beliefs of one side. Instead of dealing with the petitioners in this case, the verdict deviates by widening the ambit, referring to Hindus and Muslims,' CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said, reading out a statement after the party's politburo meeting here.

The statement said while the verdict stated 'unambiguously' that the demolition of the Babri mosque in December, 1992 was a 'serious violation of law', but finally, it handed over the site to the very forces responsible for this 'criminal assault'.

'The verdict states that the desecration of the mosque in December 1949 by the illegal placing of idols within the mosque was also a grave violation of law. Yet, the entire disputed site has been handed over to the violators of law,' it said.

The party maintained that the fact that there was no dispute prior to 1857 could not prove that Muslims were not in exclusive possession or that the mosque was not used for prayers.

On the contrary, it said the Hindu side's claim of continuous possession was upheld not on the basis of facts, but it appeared that a display of faith and beliefs had taken the upper hand.

Yechury said the court failed to bar the possibility of future raising of such disputes at other locations such as Kashi and Mathura.

'The RSS chief has, in a veiled warning, declared that the disputes of Kashi and Mathura are not on the agenda 'for now'. This is an ominous declaration, indicating that passions can be aroused on these issues at any time in the future. A firm resolve by the apex court to bar such possibilities was not forthcoming,' he said.

The CPI(M) leader further said though the December, 1949 and December, 1992 incidents were categorised as serious violations of law, justice was not delivered on the perpetrators of such criminal acts.

'The case against those including L K Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Kalyan Singh etc. as being responsible for the demolition of the Babri masjid has been languishing for nearly 28 years now. This must be expedited and the guilty punished and this verdict of the Supreme Court should not impinge on the delivery of justice,' he said.

Commenting on the Supreme Court judgment on the Sabarimala temple in Kerala, the party said by diverting the matter to other issues concerning women's rights of certain religions, which were already being heard by other benches of the court, the majority judgment had failed to uphold the 2018 verdict and by keeping the review petitions pending, had created an ambiguous and uncertain situation.

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) also reiterated its demand for constitution of a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) to investigate the Rafale deal and called it a 'scam'. PTI ASG RC