The Supreme Court in a 2:1 majority verdict refused to refer the issue of reconsideration of Ayodhya linked 1994 Ismail Faruqui ruling that mosques are not integral to Islam to a larger five-judge bench.
The SC in 1994 adjudged that namaaz could be offered from anywhere and that mosque was not integral to Islam unless that mosque had any particular significance in Islam. A temple, church or a mosque, etc, are essentially immovable properties and subject to protection under Article 25 and 26 and an immovable property is liable to be acquired.
This paved the way for the government taking over the land where the 16th century Babri mosque was raised in December 1992.
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The Muslim litigants filed for a review of the 1994 judgement after Allahabad High Court’s 2010 verdict divided the disputed site into three parts, for the deity, for Hindu sect Nirmohi Akhara and for Muslims, the original litigant in the case.
The Hindu litigants said while referring to the Ismail judgement that a ruling on the dispute does not infringe upon the right to freedom of religion. Hindu parties said that the Muslim stakeholders are challenging this plea to delay the main hearing on Ayodhya.
Justice Ashok Bhushan while reading out the verdict said the Ayodhya civil suit has to be decided on basis of evidence and the previous verdict has no relevance. He said it had to find out the context in which the five-judge Bench delivered the 1994 judgement.
Justice S. Abdul Nazeer while disagreeing with CJI Dipak Misra and Justice Bhushan, said whether mosque is integral to Islam has to be decided, considering the belief of religion and requires detailed consideration.
The majority also spoke of all religions peacefully coexisting. “All religions are not incompatible but complementary.”
The SC further said that the civil suit on Ayodhya land dispute will be heard by a three-judge bench from October 29, 2018.