Varanasi's Gyanvapi Mosque: New Plea In Fast-Track Court, Monday Hearing

The petition, which was filed by the Vishwa Vedic Sanatan Sangh, also sought permission for Hindus to worship the "Shivling" purportedly found in the mosque complex

Varanasi's Gyanvapi Mosque: New Plea In Fast-Track Court, Monday Hearing

The district court has fixed May 26 for a hearing on the maintainability issue. (File)

New Delhi:

A new petition seeking a ban on the entry of Muslims to the Gyanvapi Mosque complex was today transferred from the court of the civil judge to a fast-track court in Varanasi.

The plea will be taken up by the fast-track court judge on Monday (May 30).

The petition, which was filed by the Vishwa Vedic Sanatan Sangh in the court of civil judge Ravi Kumar Diwakar on Tuesday, also sought permission for Hindus to worship the "Shivling" purportedly found in the mosque complex

Civil judge Ravi Kumar Diwakar, who took up the Vishwa Vedic Sanatan Sangh's petition today, also heard the Gyanvapi mosque case before it was transferred to district judge Ajay Kumar Vishevesh by the Supreme Court on Friday in a view of complexity of matters.

The court had asked district judge A K Vishevesh to decide on priority, the issue of 'maintainability' in the case as sought by the mosque committee. The committee says that a case over the right to worship inside the mosque, and the court-ordered filming are both illegal.

The top court also said that its order asking for status quo inside the mosque complex would remain in operation pending the disposal of the mosque committee's plea, and "thereafter for a period of eight weeks so as to enable any party which is aggrieved by the order of the District Judge to pursue its rights and remedies in accordance with the law."

The court of district judge A K Vishevesh, which is now hearing the case as per the Supreme Court's directions, yesterday fixed May 26 for a hearing on the maintainability issue.

The court also gave a week's time to both Hindu and Muslim sides to file objections to the report of court-mandated filming at the mosque.

Early last week, lawyers representing Hindu petitioners claimed that a "Shivling" was found during the filming 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 reservoir, used by devotees to perform ritual ablutions before offering namaz. The district court had then ordered the sealing of the wazookhana.

The Supreme Court had on May 17 directed the Varanasi court to ensure the protection of the area where the "Shivling" is claimed to have been found, without obstructing the Muslim community's right to worship.

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