New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday said it will list a plea by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy seeking a direction to the Central government for declaring ‘Ram Sethu’, a national heritage monument.
A bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana said the matter could not be listed as one of the judges on the concerned bench had some health issues. The Chief Justice told Swamy, “We will list it”.
Earlier, a bench headed by Chief Justice and also comprising Justices Krishna Murari and Hima Kohli had agreed to list the plea for hearing on July 26. Swamy had mentioned the matter for hearing a couple of times in the apex court.
Swamy’s plea sought a direction to the Central government and the National Monument Authority to declare ‘Ram Setu’ as a monument of national importance.
Ram Setu, which is also known as Adam’s Bridge, is a chain of limestone shoals between Pamban Island or Rameswaram Island, off the south-eastern coast of Tamil Nadu, and Mannar Island, off the north-western coast of Sri Lanka.
Swamy contended that the government has already accepted the existence of ‘Ram Setu’ and in 2017, a meeting was also convened to examine his demand, but things have not moved after that.
In April last year, a bench headed by the then Chief Justice S.A. Bobde had directed that the plea seeking National Heritage Status for Ram Setu be listed before the next Chief Justice N.V. Ramana.
The UPA government, in 2007, had proposed a Sethusamudram project. Under this project an 83-km-long deep-water channel was to be made by extensive dredging and removal of the limestone shoals to link Mannar with Palk Strait. Swamy moved against this decision in the court and the government resorted to another plan to link Mannar with Palk Strait.