Varanasi court to decide on maintainability in Gyanvapi mosque row today

The Varanasi district court will resume hearing in the Gyanvapi-Shringar Gauri complex case and decide on the maintainability of the complex. District government counsel Rana Sanjeev Singh confirmed that the court of District Judge AK Vishevesh will hear the matter as per directions of the Supreme Court.

Singh said the court has also given a week’s time to both Hindu and Muslim sides to file objections to the report of a court-mandated videography survey of the Gyanvapi mosque premises. The civil judge had on Tuesday listed the hearing on a plea of the Muslim side for May 26.

The plea stated the suit doesn’t have merit as it violates the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991, said Vishnu Shankar Jain, a lawyer for the Hindu side. Jain said the court ordered to make available the commission report to both sides for filing objections.

However, a day before the Varanasi district court hearing the civil suit on the Gyanvapi mosque-Kashi Viswanath temple complex dispute, the Hindu side claimed that the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act 1991, does not bar in ascertaining the nature of a place of worship.

Advocate Subhash Nandan, representing the five Hindu women plaintiffs at the trial court, said it is important to determine the religious nature of the place and last week, the Supreme Court also made an observation that the ascertainment of the religious character of a place of worship is not barred by the Places of Worship Act, 1991.

The Hindu side had argued that then Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb had issued ‘farmaans’ in 1669 to destroy many temples including Kashi and Mathura, which were prominently worshipped by Hindus.

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