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Section 144 in Ayodhya as case enters final stage in Supreme Court

The apex court is hearing a batch of petitions filed by Hindu, Muslim and others sides challenging the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment, which divided the disputed site in Ayodhya into three equal parts.

PTI|
Updated: Oct 14, 2019, 01.46 PM IST
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The day-to-day hearing started on Aug 6 after a court-appointed mediation panel failed to resolve the dispute through amicable settlement.
Prohibitory orders under section 144 have been clamped in Ayodhya as the Supreme Court's revised deadline for wrapping up the proceedings in the sensitive Ram Janmbhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case approaches.

The prohibitory orders will continue till December 10, officials said.

Posting the order on his official Twitter account, District Magistrate Anuj Kumar Jha said,"The order has been issued considering safety and security of Ayodhya and those visiting here as Govt's paramount concerns."

He added,"I must add that already there is another order in force since 31.08.2019 covering aspects of unlawful assemblies and undesirable activities. The order dated 12.10.2019 has been issued to cover a couple of points which were not there in the earlier order."

The administration has also demanded a large number of security forces to maintain law and order and communal harmony.

Jha told PTI that the order also restricts drones, unmanned aerial vehicle for filming and shooting inside Ayodhya. The sale and purchase of crackers will not be allowed on the occasion of Diwali without permission of the magistrate.

Section 144 prohibits assembly of four or more people and empowers the police to book people for rioting.

The protracted hearing in the politically sensitive Ram Janmbhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute at Ayodhya entered into the crucial final leg on Monday when the Supreme Court resumed proceedings on the 38th day after the week-long Dussehra break.

A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, which started the day-to-day proceedings on August 6 after mediation proceedings failed to find an amicable solution to the vexatious dispute, has revised the deadline for wrapping up the proceedings and has fixed it on October 17.

Fourteen appeals have been filed in the apex court against the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment, delivered in four civil suits, that the 2.77-acre land in Ayodhya be partitioned equally among the three parties -- the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla.

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