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What is special about this new bench constituted to hear Ram Jambabhoomi and Babri case?


New Delhi, Jan 9: The Constitution Bench constituted by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi to hear the case of Ram Janmabhoomi and Babri Mosque dispute is special in many ways. Chief justice of India is master of the roster and deciding the bench comes under his purview. So it appears that the chief justice has constituted the bench to hear this case very carefully.

Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi

The most important and interesting part of this bench is that the Constitution Bench with five judges have been appointed to hear the case in place of three-judge bench. Most interestingly, the earlier three-judge bench had refused to give it to the constitution bench on request of the Muslim petitioners in the case but it has been done now.

The other interesting aspect of it is that all senior justices have been included in the bench. They all are likely to become chief justices of India in some point in time. If Justice A K Sikri is left aside then three justices in the bench included are the senior most judges. Justice Sikri will be retiring on March 6, 2019.

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Another interesting aspect of this bench that needs to be taken into account is that last year those four judges who had addressed a press conference against the then chief Justice Dipak Misra included Justice Gogoi. The press conference took up the matter of constituting the bench for the important cases with senior judges however the issue of Ram Temple was not included in them. The issue of senior judges hearing the important cases was being racked up time and again.

But this is also important to note that every judge of the SC matters equally and his/her decision is equally important. No one's decision is less or more important. This new bench does not have any justice from the old bench. Earlier the bench was headed by Justice Dipak Misra with Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice S Abdul Nazeer.

The bench also refused to send a part to the judgment of Ismail Farooqi case to the Constitution Bench which declared acquisition of the disputed land by the government right. Muslim petetioners wanted the matter that mosques are not considered as inseparable part of Islam. The new bench was constituted after the retirement of Justice Misra.

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