Ayodhya case: Sunni Waqf Board's advocate claims clerk was assaulted, says Nirmohi Akhara seeking 'premature possession' of disputed site

  • Rajeev Dhavan, who is representing the Sunni Waqf Board, told the Bench that his clerk received threats over Dhavan's appearance for the Muslim party

  • Dhavan argued that the the opposing parties � Ram Lalla and Nirmohi Akhara � are demanding premature possession without any foundation to it

  • Regarding the placing of idols in 1949, Dhavan said that the party cannot commit an illegality and seek to reap benefits from it

The hearing in the Ayodhya Ram Janmabhoomi-Babi Masjid case entered the 22nd day on Thursday.

The hearing began with senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, who is representing the Sunni Waqf Board, telling the Bench that his clerk received threats from other clerks and was assaulted over Dhavan's appearance for the Muslim party.

Dhavan told the five-judge Constitution Bench, comprising Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and Abdul Nazeer, that he has argued for Hindu parties in other cases. "Let me make it absolutely clear that I don't argue against Hindu faith", he said.

 Ayodhya case: Sunni Waqf Boards advocate claims clerk was assaulted, says Nirmohi Akhara seeking premature possession of disputed site

Supreme Court of India. Reuters

The Bench deplored such behaviour and offered security, which Dhavan declined. "This shouldn't be happening. Both sides are free to put their arguments before the court without any fear,"Gogoi said.

Dhavan argued that the opposing parties – Ram Lalla and Nirmohi Akhara – are demanding premature possession without any foundation to it. He carried on his arguments on 'continuing wrong'. "They are saying that there is a nuisance on our part which allows them to escape from the statute of repose. 'Continuing wrong' also has to be established in the pleadings. But there is no mention of the same in their pleadings," he said.

Regarding Nirmohi Akhara taking support of the argument of placing of idols in 1949 and referring to the same as an act of illegality, Dhavan advanced two submissions – that the party cannot commit an illegality and seek to reap benefits from it and even if the illegality was not created by them, they still cannot rely on it. "So whether it was miscreants, whether you were involved or not, illegality can never give rise to any rights – complicit or not complicit," he argued, adding that the parties are even refuting that there was a Friday namaz owing to this illegality.

Answering Justice Bobde's query about the status of the Shebait, Dhavan said that the Allahabad High Court reasoning for depriving Nirmohi Akhara is incorrect. He said that the question is of contentious, not vanishing Shebaitship. "If he succeeds, then who will get the property?" the Sunni Waqf Board's advocate said.

Dhavan said that Nirmohi Akhara's advocate Sushil Jain said that even if his party succeeds, the Shebait will have the property's management, turning "a million dollar question into a ten million dollar question".

The hearing concluded and the court will reconvene on 13 September.

Hearings had commenced on 6 August, with arguments being made on behalf of the Nirmohi Akhara. In the following hearings, submissions were also made on behalf of the deity Ram Lalla and the Ram Janmabhoomi Punaruddhar Samiti. After arguments on behalf of the Hindu parties to the Ayodhya dispute concluded, arguments have commenced on behalf of the Muslim parties to the case.

Updated Date: Sep 12, 2019 19:32:23 IST