NEW DELHI: Former Union Minister Subramanian Swamy on Thursday asked the Supreme Court to hear his plea seeking national heritage status for Ram Setu.
A bench headed by Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud agreed to list the matter after the Constitution bench is over.
"After the Constitution Bench, we will list it. See, the higher the powers, the higher is the responsibility," the bench told Swamy.
On January 19, the Union government had told the court that the process for declaring Ram Setu as national monument is underway in the Ministry of Culture.
The court had then allowed BJP leader Swamy to provide additional materials to the Ministry, examining the matter.
The court also said it would want to know as to how the process was culminated.
Swamy, for his part, had then claimed, in 2019, the Minister concerned had called meetings of all officials, and subsequently the file has gone to the Prime Minister.
The court allowed Swamy to make a representation with liberty to take legal recourse if aggrieved by the final decision.
In his petition, Swamy had asked the court to pass order and direct the Union government, along with the National Monuments Authority (NMA) to declare Ram Setu as an ancient monument of national importance.
He claimed the Centre has already accepted existence of 'Ram Setu' and a meeting was also convened in 2017 to consider his demand but nothing had happened afterwards.
Ram Setu, 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. It is believed to be the same bridge built by Lord Ram as mentioned in the 'Ramayan'.
In 2007, the UPA government had proposed a Sethusamudram project under which an 83-km-long deep water channel was to be made by extensive dredging and removal of the limestone shoals.
However, Swamy challenged the decision in the court. Subsequently, the Union government had to adopt an alternative plan to link Mannar with Palk Strait.