Ayodhya: Ram Mandir's construction may begin on Ram Navami
On Saturday, the Supreme Court pulled off one of the most impossible feats by ending the decades-old Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute.
A bench, led by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, handed over 2.77 acres of land to Hindus, paving way for the construction of a temple at the spot.
And if reports are to be believed, temple work will begin on Ram Navami next year.
Backstory: What was the dispute all about
Uttar Pradesh's temple town has been defining socio-cultural fabric in India for centuries; starting from the construction of Babri Masjid in 1528 to 1853 when first communal clashes were reported as Hindus believed Lord Rama took human form there.
The tensions got more violent in 1992 when the mosque was demolished.
In 2010, Allahabad High Court split the plot into three equal parts.
In the end, Lord Rama got plot, Muslims got land
On November 9, the constitutional bench put an end to the communally sensitive case.
SC asked the Centre to form a trust within three months, which will take care of the construction. Separately, 5 acres of land will be handed over to Sunni Waqf Board for constructing a mosque.
And now, the next steps are being planned.
On Lord Rama's birthday, work on His temple could start
To note, Ram Navami is celebrated across the nation as Lord Rama's birthday, and next year it will fall on April 2.
According to reports, the temple will be completed in 2-3 years, probably before 2022 Uttar Pradesh polls.
It's not known whether a shilanyas or ground-breaking ceremony will take place this time since one such function was held in 1989.
No better date to begin construction: VHP leader
Further, the "pre-construction" work will reportedly begin on Makar Sakranti, January 14, 2020.
"There can be no better date for initiating the Ram Janmabhoomi temple. The three-month deadline for setting up a trust ends in February and by then, all preparations would be completed. However, we will discuss with the government before we commit on the date," a senior VHP leader told IANS.
Meanwhile, VHP has a design in mind for temple
Notably, VHP, which played an important role in the Ram Janmabhoomi movement of the 80s, wants the temple to be constructed as per the design prepared by architect Chandrakant Sompura.
Late VHP chief Ashok Singhal had asked him to make a design, which was circulated among devotees across the nation.
A model of Sompura's temple has been kept at Karsevakpuram in Ayodhya too.
Trust will be similar to Somnath's; Nyas might get seat
There are speculations that the trust will be formed on the lines of those in Somnath or Vaishno Devi temples.
Separately, Centre will also give 62.23 acres of land around the site for construction.
Since Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas holds about 43 acres of land, its representative might get a seat on the trust.
UP CM might nominate a representative too.