In passing the Ayodhya verdict, a Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court decided a dispute "whose origins are as old as the idea of India itself".
That is how the author of the 929-page judgment has described the dispute spanning centuries. The judgment is unanimous, with the Bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and comprising Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer all concurring.
But, who among the five judges has actually authored the judgment?
The Ayodhya Verdict does not specify who the author is. There is nothing in law saying that a judgment must bear the name of the author. The Supreme Court Rules, 2013 are silent on this aspect.
The verdict was pronounced today by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi. But that does not necessarily mean he is the author of the judgment.
Rule 2 of Order XII of the Supreme Court Rules states, "A member of the Court may read a judgment prepared by another member of the Court."
If one could hazard a guess, it would be Justice DY Chandrachud, given the style of writing and the formatting of the judgment. He is one of the few Supreme Court judges who adds a table of contents to his judgments. A relatable example of one of his judgments would be Navtej Singh Johar & Ors v. Union of India.
The name of the author has probably been withheld in order to prevent judges from being singled out. The Ayodhya Case, after all, is perhaps the most sensitive case that has been adjudicated by the Supreme Court of India.
Tags : #Supreme Court of India ; #Ayodhya Verdict