Gyanvapi Mosque: Varanasi District dismisses masjid committee's pleastext_fields
Varanasi: The Varanasi District and Sessions Court dismissed the pleas challenging the civil suit filed by four Hindu women seeking the right to worship inside the Gyanvapi mosque in Varanasi, agreeing to hear the women's plea in detail.
District Judge AK Vishvesh held that the civil suit that challenged the title of the Gyanvapi mosque and the land surrounding it will stand.
In July, the Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee approached the Supreme Court seeking an order to quash a ruling by the Civil Judge (Senior Division) court that kept the maintainability of the civil suit filed by Hindu devotees.
The court, on May 20, the Supreme Court transferred the case to the District Judge considering the "complexity of the issues involved in the civil suit". The SC also said that it is also looking forward to the district court's decision on the mosque committee's application, declining to intervene in the case then.
While the Hindu side said that the mosque was built on the site of a temple, the Muslim side argued that the mosque was built on Wakf premises, and the Places of Worship Act barred changing the character of the mosque.
Earlier this year, a Varanasi civil court ordered the filming of the centuries-old mosque based on the petition that claimed there are idols of Hindu Gods and goddesses in the Gyanvapi mosque complex.
The report claimed a "Shivling", or relic of Lord Shiva, had been found in a pond within the mosque complex used for "Wazoo" or purification rituals before Muslim prayers.
The filming inside the mosque was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Gyanvapi mosque committee, which said the move violates a 1991 law (Places of Worship Act) that maintain the religious status of places of worship as of August 15, 1947. The plea was also rejected by the court.
The Muslim petitioners argued that "such petitions and sealing of mosques will lead to public mischief and communal disharmony, will affect mosques across the country."