The Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Wakf Board announced on Tuesday that it would move the Supreme Court against the verdict of the Allahabad High Court in the Babri Masjid-Ramjanmabhoomi case.
But the board will also keep its doors open for negotiations with rival parties for a settlement out of court.
Board chairman Zufar Ahmad Farooqui said at a press conference that the 13-member board had taken a unanimous decision on the issue. He also clarified that the board had not authorised anybody or any group to initiate talks with other parties for a settlement.
“If any proposal for an out-of-court compromise is made by any party, it will be considered by the chairman and an appropriate decision shall be taken after consultation with the board,” he said.
The Wakf board was the main Muslim party in the legal dispute over ownership of 2.77 acres of land on which the Babri Masjid was located before being demolished by Hindutwa activists in December 1992.
The High Court verdict on September 30 allocated one-third of the land to the Wakf board while granting two-thirds to Hindu litigants.
Farooqui said a lot of confusion prevailed over an out-of-court settlement after one of the nine Muslim litigants associated with the board’s suit, Mohammad Hashim Ansari, urged Mahant Gyan Das of the Akhil Bharatiya Akhara Parishad to initiate talks with Hindu groups.
Farooqui clarified that the board had not authorised Ansari to initiate any negotiation. Even the Naib Imam of Lucknow’s Eidgah Maulana Khalid Rashid Firangi Mahli has been stressing the need for a settlement before moving the apex court.