The government on Tuesday informed the Supreme Court that Ram Setu does not fulfill the criteria for being declared a national monument. Resuming his arguments, senior advocate Fali S. Nariman also regretted withdrawing the Centre’s earlier affidavit that had questioned the existence of Lord Ram.
The jurist agreed with the bench headed by Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan that the objectionable paragraph should have been deleted instead of withdrawing the entire affidavit. “People at that time reacted in a particular manner. Your Lordship is right to stay just a paragraph should have been deleted,” Nariman said.
Replying to a petitioner’s query on whether the government had considered another alternative alignment, Nariman told the court that he had written to the Prime Minister and was awaiting instructions. "I will receive instructions by this evening or tomorrow," he said.
Submitting before the bench the senior advocate claimed it was the government’s prerogative to declare a monument national. He reminded the court that it was not empowered to issue a mandamus directing the Centre to categorise a monument as national.
“As far as we are concerned, the stand of the government is very clear that Ram Setu does not fulfill the criteria of national monument,” Nariman told the court.