Date wrong by century in verdict

LUCKNOW: It is interesting that a high court that unambiguously asserts the authenticity of a birth which could well be several millennia old is careless enough to get the date of a relatively recent event of Indian history wrong by a 100 years.

On page seven of Justice S.U. Khan’s judgment posted on the Allahabad High Court’s website, he writes: "The railing/grill was placed either in 1956 when Awadh was annexed by the Britishers or immediately after 1957 war of independence (called mutiny by Britishers)."

The observation comes in the context of a bifurcation that was made after a riot in 1855 that killed many Muslims, according to Justice Khan.

India’s first war of independence took place in 1857 to unite India against the British rule.

While the mistake is obviously a result of a typographical error, it was not immediately clear how it was not detected before the judgement was made public.

"After the said riot, a bifurcation was made of the adjoining land by placing a brick and grill (vertical iron bars) wall (railing) of 7 or 8 feet height dividing the adjoining land into two parts, inner courtyard adjacent to the constructed portion and outer courtyard adjacent to the boundary wall towards East," Justice Khan writes.

"The outer Courtyard also included a flank in between northern side of the constructed portion and inner courtyard on the one hand and northern boundary wall on the other hand. The railing divided the entire premises in two almost equal parts."

A three-judge Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court Thursday pronounced its verdict in the Ramjanmabhoomi Babri Masjid dispute, ruling that the place where the Babri mosque in Ayodhya stood before it was razed by Hindu mobs in 1992 was indeed the birthplace of Lord Ram revered by millions.

Judges S.U. Khan, D.V. Sharma and Sudhir Agarwal ruled that the entire disputed land in Ayodhya, a riverside town in Uttar Pradesh which for decades became synonymous with Hindu-Muslim tensions, should be divided among the Sunni Waqf Board, Hindus and the Nirmohi Akhara, a Hindu sect who were among those who fought the court battle.(IANS)

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