The Sunday initiative for an out-of-court settlement by Mohammad Hashim Ansari, one of the two main litigants in the 60-year-old Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi title suit, had a positive impact.
On September 30, the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court ruled that the disputed land where the Babri mosque stood before it was torn down on December 6, 1992, be divided among three litigants in the case.
Although two-thirds of the land went to Hindu bodies — Nirmohi Akhara and the Ram Lala Virajman — community leaders based in Ayodhya are talking about "solving the Ayodhya issue in Ayodhya".
A Muslim social organisation, Forum for Peace and Unity, also made a pitch for an out-of-court settlement despite the Muslim litigants making it clear on the judgment day itself that their next stop would be the Supreme Court.
Hashim Ansari urged Mahant Gyan Das, president of the Akhara Parishad, on Sunday to mediate for a resolution. Das, in turn, talked to Ramvilas Das Vendanti of the Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas, another litigant in the case, on Monday.
Das said he would talk to Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Ashok Singhal too.
Meanwhile, Sharad Sharma, VHP's Uttar Pradesh spokesperson, said, "It's high time that people on both sides stop listening to their lawyers."
Sharma's statement was in support of Ansari's view that Zafaryab Jeelani, who represented the Sunni Waqf Board and insisted on the case being taken to the apex court, was not the board's spokesperson.
On October 9, the legal committee of the board would meet in Delhi to study the verdict and then forward its suggestions to the working committee meeting on October 16.
"Now that the high court decision has been accepted by one and all, we appeal to people, particularly Muslims, to settle the issue through talks," said forum president Maulana Zahir Ahmad at a press conference in Lucknow on Monday.