Legal experts were on Thursday divided in their opinion about the Allahabad High Court verdict that the disputed land in Ayodhya be divided equally into three parts among Hindus and Muslims with some saying it would promote harmony while others termed it as “surprising”.
“I welcome this judgement wholeheartedly. It will promote secularism in the country and harmony among all religious communities,” former Law Minister and senior advocate Shanti Bhushan said.
Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, who could not succeed in the Supreme Court in getting the pronouncement of verdict deferred for exploring the possibility of an out-of-court settlement of the vexatious issue, echoed a similar view.
“Subject to examination of the judgement, it appears from the operative parts of the verdict of the three judges that two of them have broadly decided that the disputed property be divided into three equal parts,” he said.
“Constitution expert Rajeev Dhawan termed the verdict as “astonishing” and said “it is essentially and effectively in favour of the Hindu groups. There is an act of generosity that the Muslim community has been included.
Senior lawyer P.P. Rao said it was a “surprising” judgment which has been delivered in a “panchayat style”.
Harish Salve, who was the Solicitor General during the NDA rule, said “judges have taken the view that the land was in joint worship and it became the joint property and therefore, they directed the partition of what is called the joint property”.
Shanti Bhushan said neither of the parties to the suits should challenge the verdict in the Supreme Court as they have been held joint owners of the disputed site.