Ram Chabutra birthplace of Ram: Muslim parties agree

New Delhi: In a new twist in Ayodhya title dispute being heard in the Supreme Court, the Muslim parties on Tuesday accepted Ram Chabutra as the birthplace of Lord Ram and could not provide a satisfactory answer on the absence of any reference to Babri Masjid in the "Ain-i-Akbari", a 16th century document recording the administration of the Mughal Empire under Emperor Akbar.

A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi is conducting the hearing on the vexed dispute. Senior advocate Zafaryab Jilani, representing the Sunni Waqf Board, began his arguments by contending that two leading Hindu religious texts - 'Valmiki Ramayana' and 'Ramcharitmanas' - do not specifically provide proof of spot of the birth of Lord Ram.

At this, Justice D.Y. Chandrachud said: "Accepting this would mean Hindus cannot believe that Ram was born anywhere in Ayodhya at all." Jilani reiterated that there is no mention of the specific spot. "There was a temple, which was called Janmasthan temple located to the north of the disputed structure," he told the bench.

As Justice S.A. Bobde asked: "Do you accept Ayodhya as birthplace of Lord Ram, and do you also accept that Ram Chhabutra (which came into existence after 1855) is the birthplace of Lord Ram?", he replied: "We accept it because, three other courts said it. Thereafter, we did not disturb it. Ram Chabutra was in their (Hindus) possession."

-By Sumit Saxena

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