[dropcap]A[/dropcap] five-judge Constitution bench, comprising the Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi, Justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer today granted the mediation panel working to find an amicable resolution to the Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi land dispute, further time till August 15, 2019.
“We have received a report from the chairman of the mediation committee. It sought an extension of time, we are inclined for it,” said the CJI Gogoi for himself and the other four justices on the bench.
On March 8, 2019, the Supreme Court had referred the long pending Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi land dispute case for mediation. The Court, after taking note of the names suggested by the parties, had constituted a three-member panel of mediators in the following composition
- Former judge of the Supreme Court, Justice F M Ibrahim Khaliifulah – Chairperson
- Founder of Art of Living Sri Sri Ravi Shankar – Member
- Senior Advocate Sriram Panchu – Member
The mediators had been granted liberty by the Supreme Court to co-opt other members of the Panel, if so required.
The court had also said that mediation proceedings should be conducted with utmost confidentiality so as to ensure its success, which could only be safeguarded by directing that the proceedings and the views expressed therein by any of the parties, including the mediators should be kept confidential and not be revealed to any other person. Further, it said proceedings would be held in camera as per the norms applicable to the conduct of mediation proceedings.
The mediation proceedings are being held in Faizabad in Uttar Pradesh.
Though there is no gag order, the court had empowered the panel members to pass necessary orders in writing, if required, to restrain publication of the details of the mediation proceedings.