In a clear indication that judgment in Ayodhya dispute case is likely to be delivered before CJI Ranjan Gogoi's retirement in November, the Supreme Court on Thursday said that it cannot grant even a single extra day beyond October 18 to all petitioners to complete their submissions.
A five-judge Constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said that it doesn't want to give even "one day extra" beyond October 18 after it was apprised by the lawyers that their submissions will be completed by the said date in "all the possibilities and manner".
Today was the 32nd day of the day-to-day hearing on a batch of appeals filed by Muslim and Hindu parties challenging the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment, which has ruled to divide the disputed site into three equal parts.
The bench will write the landmark judgement for ownership of 2.77-acre land once the arguments are concluded by lawyers of UP Sunni Waqf Board, Nirmoni Akhada and Ram Deity -- three parties in the case.
On September 18, the court said that arguments have to be completed by October 18 even as the mediation panel may continue its work under confidentiality.
"As per the estimate of tentative dates to finish the hearing in the case, we can say that the submissions have to be likely completed by October 18," Gogoi had said.
Earlier, the court had observed that the hearing of the appeals, which is at a very advanced stage, will continue without any interruption.
It is to be noted that CJI Gogoi is set to demit office on November 17 and he has to deliver the judgement before that as he had entirely heard the case from the beginning of the arguments.
The court had also said that simultaneously the mediation process can go along with the hearing and if an amicable settlement is reached through by it, the same can be filed before the court.
The day-to-day hearing started on August 6 after a court-appointed mediation panel failed to resolve the dispute through amicable settlement.