New Delhi: Four review petitions supported by the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) were filed on Friday against the Supreme Court’s 9 November Ram-Janmabhoombh-Babri-Masjid land title dispute verdict.
The review petitions were filed by Maulana Mufti Hasbullah, Mohd Umar, Maulana Mahfoozur Rehman and Mishbahuddin.
The petitioners have challenged the title of the land being given to Hindu parties, arguing that Hindus never had exclusive possession of the entire site. They added that the apex court’s judgement has, in fact, given directions to clear the existing structure that remains after the Babri Masjid was demolished at the site in December 1992.
“The de jure, indeed de facto, effect of the direction in the judgement is to destroy the mosque if it still existed," the petitioners argued.
At the very outset, the petitioners, however, clarified that the purpose of filing the review plea is not to disturb peace, saying Muslims have always maintained peace, but their properties have been the “victim of violence and unfair treatment".
The petitioners argued that the verdict “condones serious illegalities of destruction, criminal trespass and violation of rule of law, including damaging the Mosque and eventually destroying it", but the “entire concept of restitution in the judgement is based on the unlawful destruction of the Muslim’s place of worship...and condoned contrary to all norms of restitutive justice".
The petitioners countered the judgement on three points: “Contrary to law, self-contradictory and in violation of complete justice that it invoked."
On 2 December, the first review petition in the case was filed by Maulana Syed Ashhad Rashidi, the legal heir of the original litigant, M, Siddiq, and the Uttar Pradesh president of Jamiat Ulama-e-Hind, saying that “complete justice" could only be done by directing reconstruction of the Babri Masjid.
While the main litigant, the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Wakf Board, has decided against challenging the verdict, Rashidi has sought a review of the verdict on 14 counts.
He said “the judgement under review erred in allotting alternate land of 5 acres to the Sunni Waqf Board under Article 142 even though the same was not pleaded for". Rashidi has also sought an interim stay on implementing the SC order, which directed the Centre to form a trust within three months for the construction of a Ram temple at the site.
Rashidi also questioned the direction asking the Centre and the Uttar Pradesh government to allot five acre land for the construction of a mosque at a prominent place in Ayodhya, saying that such a prayer was never made by the Muslim parties.
On 9 November, a five-judge bench of the apex court had unanimously pronounced its verdict, asking the Centre to set up a trust, which would eventually pave the way for the construction of a temple where the 16th century Babri Masjid in Ayodhya stood.
The mosque was razed by a Hindu mob on 6 December 1992. The court had also said that 5 acres of land should be allotted to Muslims for the construction of a mosque in Ayodhya.
The top court had also ordered the government to set up the trust within three months. Nirmohi Akhara, one of the three litigants in the case, could be given representation in the trust if the Centre accepted the proposal, the bench added.
PTI contributed to this story.