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Supreme Court extends stay on survey of Idgah complex in Krishna Janmabhoomi Temple case

Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta directed the further hearing of the plea by the Committee of Management Trust Shahi Masjid Idgah in April, with existing interim orders to persist. The court will collectively address all related petitions in April.

Nitin Kumar Edited By: Nitin Kumar @Niitz1 New Delhi Published on: January 29, 2024 16:04 IST
Supreme Court
Image Source : PTI/FILE PHOTO Media personnel outside the Supreme Court in New Delhi.

In a significant development, the Supreme Court issued an order on Monday, extending the interim stay on the Allahabad High Court's decision to conduct a court-monitored survey of the Shahi Idgah Mosque complex adjacent to the Krishna Janmabhoomi temple in Mathura. A bench comprising Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta directed the Committee of Management Trust Shahi Masjid Idgah's plea for further hearing in the first half of April. The court emphasised that interim orders already granted will persist until then, urging parties to conclude pleadings by the specified date.

The apex court clarified that all petitions related to the matter will be collectively addressed during the April hearings. The stay was initially put in place on January 16, halting the operation of the December 14, 2023, order of the Allahabad High Court, which permitted a court-monitored survey of the Shahi Idgah Mosque complex.

While affirming the continuation of proceedings on the suit's maintainability under Order 7 Rule 11 of the Civil Procedure Code, the Supreme Court raised legal concerns about the vague application for the appointment of a court commissioner.

The Committee of Management Trust Shahi Masjid Idgah, in its plea, asserted that the high court should have considered its challenge to the suit's maintainability before deciding on related applications.

The plea also highlighted the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991, contending that the lawsuit is barred by this act, which prohibits altering the character of religious places after August 15, 1947, except the Ram temple in Ayodhya.

The ongoing dispute revolves around a suit filed in Mathura, where the Hindu side claims that the Shahi Idgah mosque stands on part of the 13.37-acre land belonging to the Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi Trust. The Supreme Court is already handling another petition from the mosque committee, challenging the high court's order transferring all matters related to the dispute to itself.

Also read | Ayodhya Ram Temple engineered to withstand once-in-2,500-year quake, confirm scientists

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