Tuesday, May 10, 2011

India's Supreme Court Stays Division of Land At Disputed Holy Site

According to Bar and Bench, India's Supreme Court yesterday stayed an order issued last year by the Allahbad High Court that divided a sacred site claimed by both Hindus and Muslims among three separate groups, two Hindu and one Muslim. At issue is site in the town of Ayodhya that Hindus say the site was the birthplace of Lord Ram and was the location of an ancient temple. However the Babri Masjid mosque was constructed on the site sometime between the 16th and 18th century. In 1992, a Hindu mob partially destroyed the mosque, and widespread violence followed. The Supreme Court ordered that there should be no religious activity on 67 acres adjacent to the site acquired by the central government.  However the status quo is to be maintained as to the rest of the land, presumably while the Supreme Court considers the case.  The Supreme Court questioned the action of the Allahbad High Court in partitioning the land when none of the parties had asked for that type of order.