- Varanasi district court rejected plea questioning the maintainability of petition filed by Hindus
- Court agreed to maintain plea seeking daily worship permission of Hindu deities at mosque complex
- Plea for daily puja is likely to be heard on September 22
The Varanasi district court on Monday rejected the plea questioning the maintainability of a petition seeking permission for daily worship of Hindu deities whose idols are located on an outer wall of the Gyanvapi mosque. District Judge A K Vishvesh ordered that it would continue to hear the petition seeking the right to worship in the temple.
As the court has agreed to maintain the plea seeking permission for daily worship of Hindu deities at the mosque premises, will the Gyanvapi-Shringar Gauri case become another Ram temple movement of sorts?
Here's what the order means and what lies ahead
- First, after the court held the plea 'maintainable', the hearing will continue on the plea of the Hindus' sides seeking permission to worship Shringar Gauri and other deities in the complex.
- The Muslim side will approach Allahabad High Court against the district court's order.
- The plea for daily puja is likely to be heard on September 22.
- The Hindus' side will further seek for Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) survey and carbon dating of ‘Shivling’.
Five women had filed the petition seeking permission for daily worship of Hindu deities whose idols are claimed to be located on an outer wall of the Gyanvapi mosque. The Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee has said the Gyanvapi mosque is a Waqf property and has questioned the maintainability of the plea. The district judge had last month reserved the order till September 12 in the communally sensitive matter. The court fixed September 22 as the next date of hearing in the case.
Madan Mohan Yadav, a lawyer of the Hindu side, had claimed that the mosque was constructed after demolishing the temple. Earlier, a lower court had ordered a videographic survey of the complex. The survey work was completed on May 16 and the report was presented in the court on May 19. The Hindu side had claimed in the lower court that a Shivling was found during the videographic survey of the Gyanvapi mosque-Shringar Gauri complex but it was contested by the Muslim side.
The Supreme Court on May 20 transferred the case from a civil judge (senior division) to a district judge, saying considering the “complexities and sensitivity” of the issue, it is better if a senior judicial officer having an experience of over 25-30 years handles this case.
The bench also said that no manner of restriction should be imposed on Muslims entering the mosque to offer namaz or religious observances.
The matter had reached the Supreme Court on a petition filed by the Mosque Management Committee, which challenged the civil judge’s orders. The order permitted inspection, survey, and videography of the mosque’s complex to collect evidence about the alleged existence of idols of Hindu deities inside the mosque, which is adjacent to the Kashi Vishwanath Temple.