Kashi Vishwanath-Gyanvapi Mosque Land row; Varanasi Court Allows ASI Survey

Varanasi: A Civil Court in Varanasi district of UP has allowed the Archaeological Survey of India to undertake a survey at the disputed site of Kashi Vishwanath Temple-Gyanvapi Mosque, News18 reported.

The Court has directed the Uttar Pradesh government to bear the cost of the survey. ASI has been asked to do the survey to find if there was a “superimposition, alteration or addition or structural overlapping with/over, any other religious structure.”

The development comes in a petition field by Advocate Vijay Shankar Rastogi on behalf of Swayambhu Jyotirlinga Bhagwan Vishweshwar. The Petitioner sought a declaration that the land on which the Mosque is built belongs to the Hindus. The Court has been urged to declare that Hindus have the right to worship and reconstruct their temple on the said land. Significantly, the land title dispute relates to the Gyanpavi Mosque, allegedly built on the ruins of Kashi Vishwanath temple.

The Hindu community claims that the Mosque, which is situated adjacent to the Kashi Vishwanath temple, was built after demolishing a portion of the said temple. According to a suit filed by the Temple’s Trust in 1991 in the Varansi District Court, the temple was destroyed by Mughal emperor Aurangzeb in 1664 and the mosque was built using the remains of the temple.

In the instant petition, a prohibitory injunction is sought against the Muslim community from interfering in peaceful possession of the site by Hindus. Also Read – Supreme Court Mulls Guidelines For Appointment Of Ad-Hoc Judges Under Article 224A; Seeks Views Of High Courts The petition was opposed by the Gyanvyapi Mosque management committee— Anjuman Intazamia Masazid.

It is also significant to note that the Allahabad High Court is yet to decide the maintainability of the suit filed by the Temple’s Trust in 1991 for restoration of the land to Hindus. As per the Mosque management, a Civil Court is barred from adjudicating the instant dispute in view of the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991 read with Section 9 of CPC.

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