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Gyanvapi mosque row: Varanasi court to hear Muslim side's plea today

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Gyanvapi mosque row: Varanasi court to hear Muslim sides plea today
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The Varanasi district court today will on Thursday the Muslim side's application seeking to reject the civil suit of the Hindu side's claim on the Gyanvapi mosque.

The court of district judge A K Vishevesh had on Tuesday decided to hear the mosque committee's plea first, challenging the maintainability of a petition filed by five Hindu women who have requested access to the Gyanvapi mosque complex.

The Hindu female petitioners had claimed that there are idols of gods and goddesses inside the mosque.

Meanwhile, the district judge had also directed the two sides to file objections to the report of the court-mandated filming inside the mosque complex within a week.

The mosque committee contends that filming at the mosque violates a 1991 law that prohibits the alteration of the character of any place of worship in the country, as it existed on 15 Aug 1947.

The Supreme Court on Friday said it was moving the Gyanvapi case to a "senior and experienced judge" in view of the "complexities" and "sensitivity" of the issue.

The Supreme Court also asked the district judge to decide on priority whether the survey at the Gyanvapi mosque and the petition that led to the inspection was 'maintainable' or not.

A separate petition seeking a ban on the entry of Muslims to the Gyanvapi Mosque complex was on Wednesday transferred from the court of a civil judge to a fast-track court in Varanasi for hearing on May 30.

Early last week, lawyers representing Hindu petitioners claimed that a 'Shivling' was found during the videographic survey of the Gyanvapi mosque complex.

The claim was disputed by the mosque committee members who said it was part of the water fountain mechanism in the wazookhana, the pool used by devotees to perform ritual ablutions before offering namaz. The district court had then ordered the sealing of the 'wazookhana'.

The court-mandated filming was carried out at the Gyanvapi mosque on May 14, 15 and 16, and the report was submitted to a Varanasi court on May 19.

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TAGS:Gyanvapi Gyanvapi mosque case 
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