The Varanasi district court on Tuesday said it will first hear the Muslim side seeking rejection of the suit in the Gyanvapi-Shringar Gauri complex case on May 26. The court of District Judge AK Vishvesh also allowed objections from both Hindu and Muslim sides on the videographic survey of the mosque area.
“The hearing on the Muslim side’s plea under Order 7 Rule 11 application regarding the rejection of suit will take place on May 26th. Court asked both sides to file an objection to the commission report, and submit the report within one week,” said Vishnu Jain, representing the Hindu side.
The court was to decide today whether to hear first the Hindu petitioners’ plea to invite objections to the Gyanvapi mosque survey report or the Muslim side’s case that the writ is not maintainable.
The apex court had on Friday transferred the Gyanvapi-Shringar Gauri complex case from a civil judge (senior division) to a district judge, saying looking at the “complexities” and “sensitivity” of the issue, it is better if a senior judicial officer having an experience of over 25-30 years handles this case.
The Hindu side argued that since a court-appointed commission has completed its survey work, the opponents should present their objections to it. Madan Mohan Yadav, a lawyer for the Hindu side, said they pleaded to make available the commission’s report and videography done by it to present its side on it.
Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee’s lawyer Mohammad Tauhid Khan argued that the writ is not maintainable under order 7 and Rule 11 of the CPC (Civil Procedure Code), hence, it should be dismissed.
A fresh petition was also moved by Dr Kulpati Tiwari, Mahant of Kashi Vishwanath temple, for regular “pujan” (worship) of the Shivling , which he said was found in the Gyanvapi mosque complex.
On May 16, the lower court had directed the district administration to seal a spot in the Gyanvapi Masjid complex after counsels representing the Hindu petitioners said a Shivling was found during a court-mandated videography survey.
A mosque management committee spokesperson disputed the claim, telling a television channel that the object was part of a “fountain”. He said lawyers representing the mosque committee were not fully heard before the sealing order was announced.
The Hindu side claimed that the Shivling was found close to the “wazookhana”–a small reservoir used by Muslim devotees to perform ritual ablutions before offering the namaz.