The Supreme Court Monday declined early hearing of the petitions in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title dispute case, saying it has already listed them in January next year.
The apex court on October 29 had fixed the case for the first week of January before an "appropriate bench", which will decide the schedule of hearing.
"We have already passed the order. The appeals are coming up in January. Permission declined," a bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice S K Kaul said while rejecting the request of early hearing the cases.
The plea for early hearing was mentioned by lawyer Barun Kumar Sinha, representing Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha (ABHM) which is one of the respondents in the appeal filed by legal heirs of M Siddiq in the case.
"Since Ram Janam Bhoomi at Ayodhya is the matter of tremendous faith of Hindus and they are very much hopeful about the decision at an early date of the aforesaid appeals," the ABHM said in its plea.
The case is of great concern for both Hindus and Muslims of the country and the pendency of these cases have earlier caused communal disharmony, it said.
A three-judge bench of the top court had on October 29, by a 2:1 majority, refused to refer to a five-judge constitution bench the issue of reconsideration of the observations in its 1994 judgement of the Allahabad High Court that a mosque was not integral to Islam. The matter had arisen during the hearing of the Ayodhya land dispute.
As many as 14 appeals have been filed against the high court judgement, delivered in four civil suits, that the 2.77 acre land be partitioned equally among three parties -- the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla.
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