SC extends time for Ayodhya mediation panel till August 15

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The Supreme Court on Friday extended the time for the Ayodhya mediation panel till August 15 to explore the possibility of an amicable solution to the politically sensitive Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute.

A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said, “the panel wants more time to find an amicable solution.”

During the hearing, CJI Gogoi said, “we are not going to tell you what progress has been made…that’s confidential”.

A five-judge Constitution bench also comprising Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and SA Nazeer said that they had received the report from Justice FM Kalifulla, a chairman of the mediation panel in which the panel had sought an extension of time till August 15 to complete the mediation proceedings.

The other members of the mediation panel are the Art of Living founder Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and senior advocate Sriram Panchu, a well-known mediator.

The counsel appearing for both the Muslim and Hindu parties expressed confidence over the ongoing mediation proceedings.

The bench also clarified that the mediation process should be held in-camera and had barred media from reporting on its developments.

As per the court order, the mediation was to take place at Faizabad.