By granting five acres of land to Ayodhya, but outside the disputed area, to Muslim parties, the Supreme Court has used the extraordinary powers conferred upon it by Article 142 of the Constitution.
The Supreme Court, implicitly referring to the demolition of the Babri Masjid hut on the disputed site, stated that it invoked Article 142 "to ensure that the damage committed is repaired".
According to him, "justice would not prevail if the court neglected the right of Muslims deprived of the structure of the mosque by means that should not have been used in a secular country attached to the rule of law".
"The Constitution postulates the equality of all religions. Tolerance and mutual coexistence nourish the secular commitment of our nation and its people, "said the court.
Section 142 (1) provides that "The Supreme Court, in the exercise of its jurisdiction, may make any order or order necessary to render full justice to any case or matter pending before it. Every order or order so rendered shall be enforceable throughout the Indian territory in the manner prescribed by any law passed by Parliament and, pending a disposition to that effect, in such manner as the President may prescribe by order ".
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The provision which gives the Supreme Court broad powers to ensure "full justice" has been used in general in cases involving human rights and environmental protection.
This was the first time the court had relied on this power in a case involving civil litigation involving an immovable, involving private parties. Although the court's power under section 142 "is not unlimited," it "encompasses both notions of justice, fairness and good conscience, as well as the additional power of the court to to render justice complete ".
In fact, it is not only for the Muslim parties that the SC invoked Article 142. The same article was invoked in the case of Nirmohi Akhara, party to the case.
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The Akhara will now be part of the board, which will develop the temple construction project.
"… Given Nirmohi Akhara's historical presence on the disputed site and its role, it is necessary for this Court to avail itself of the powers conferred on it by section 142 to bring justice to justice. Therefore, we ask that, when defining the scheme, an appropriate role in the management be assigned to Nirmohi Akhara, "said the judiciary.
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