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India

Muslim Body Moves SC Seeking Stay On Videography At Gyanvapi Mosque In Varanasi

The plea was filed by Senior Advocate Huzefa Ahmadi on behalf of Anjuman Intezamia Masajid in which he requested to maintain status quo.

Security personnel stand guard in front of the Gyanvapi Mosque in connection with the Shringar Gauri Temple-Gyanvapi Masjid row, in Varanasi on Saturday. A survey of the mosque was done by a Court-appointed Commissioner yesterday. (ANI Photo)

New Delhi: A plea was filed on Friday in the Supreme Court against an order passed by Varanasi Court which allowed an advocate commissioner to survey the Gyanvapi Mosque in Varanasi.

The plea was filed by Senior Advocate Huzefa Ahmadi on behalf of Anjuman Intezamia Masjid in which he requested to maintain status quo. Taking up the plea, the apex court has said that it will look into the files. The CJI said that he will look into the papers and list it.

A district court in Varanasi on Thursday rejected the plea to change the court-appointed advocate commissioner for conducting a video survey of the Gyanvapi-Kashi Vishwanath complex and appointed two additional advocate commissioners to assist him.

Two more advocate commissioners, Ajay Singh and Vishal Singh, have been appointed by the court, in addition to Advocate Ajay Kumar Mishra. The two additional advocate commissioners were appointed after Mishra was accused of being biased by the Anjuman Intezamia mosque committee.

The Commission is also directed to submit a report by May 17 on the inspection of the Gyanvapi-Kashi Vishwanath temple complex.

The court of Civil Judge (Senior Division) Ravi Kumar Diwakar, which had also heard the matter relating to the opening of the two basements located inside the mosque complex for videography, delivered the verdict after hearing the arguments of both the sides.

The Gyanvapi mosque management committee had filed an application seeking a replacement of court official Ajay Kumar Mishra, who was assigned to do the survey, claiming he was not impartial.

The survey in the mosque started last Friday but was not completed because of a dispute over videography inside the mosque. The caretaker committee of the Gyanvapi mosque and its lawyers opposed any videography inside the mosque. But the lawyers for the petitioners (5 Hindu women) have claimed that they had the court’s go-ahead.

Civil Judge Ravi Kumar Diwakar who ordered the continuation of the survey of the Gyanvapi mosque premises and rejected the plea to change the court-appointed advocate commissioner for conducting a video survey of the Gyanvapi-Shringar Gauri complex, expressed safety concerns on Thursday.

In his order, the judge said that an atmosphere of fear is being created and he is worried about his family’s safety.

Diwakar said, “An atmosphere of fear was created by making this civil case into an extraordinary case. The fear is so much that my family is always concerned about my safety and I am concerned about their safety. Concerns about safety are repeatedly expressed by my wife when I am out of the house.”

“Yesterday, my mother (in Lucknow) during our conversation also expressed concerns about my safety, and from the news received by the media, she came to know that maybe I am also going to the spot as commissioner and my mother asked me that I should not go on commission on the spot, as it may endanger my safety,” the judge added.

(With ANI Inputs)

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