4 Sep 2023 9:13 AM GMT
The Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee (which manages Varanasi’s Gyanvapi mosque) has moved an application before the Varanasi Court opposing the Archaeological Survey of India's (ASI) plea seeking a further 8 weeks’ time to submit its Survey Report pertaining to the Mosque Premises. In its application, the mosque committee has submitted that the ASI is defying the orders of...
The Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee (which manages Varanasi’s Gyanvapi mosque) has moved an application before the Varanasi Court opposing the Archaeological Survey of India's (ASI) plea seeking a further 8 weeks’ time to submit its Survey Report pertaining to the Mosque Premises.
In its application, the mosque committee has submitted that the ASI is defying the orders of the Supreme Court and the Allahabad High Court to conduct a scientific survey of the mosque premises as the ASI has not been authorised to remove debris or garbage inside the mosque premises.
“In its application, the ASI has proposed to do the survey after removing the debris/garbage etc, however, the ASI has been ordered by Allahabad High Court or the Supreme Court New to conduct the survey only by scientific method and GPR method, ASI has not been authorized to conduct survey after cleaning any debris or garbage.”
The Mosque committee’s application further claims that removing the debris or soil present inside the western barricading of the western wall of Gyanvapi Mosque and collecting the debris by bringing it to another place is a threat to the building of the mosque and it may collapse due to this.
The application further states that the ASI’s Additional Director Alok Tripathi is conducting the survey work contrary to the affidavit (dated July 26, 2023) filed before by him in the HC which is against the HC’s order of August 3, 2023 and the SC’s order of August 4, 2023.
“During the ASI survey, a lot of soil was taken out from the basement and collected on the open ground west of the mosque and the soil present at the west side of the mosque's western wall was also excavated and on September 3, 2023, two trucks of soil were taken out of the private property to ASI, which is contrary to the order of the Supreme Court dated August 4,” the application submits.
Against this backdrop, the Mosque committee has urged the Varanasi Court to not grant any further extension of time to the ASI and reject its plea filed on September 2.
It may be noted that the ASI is presently conducting a scientific survey of the Gyanvapi complex in Varanasi as per the July 21 order of the Varanasi District Judge to determine if the mosque was constructed over a pre-existing structure of a Hindu temple. The ASI has already surveyed the premises for around 30 days now.
On August 4, the Supreme Court refused to stop the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) from carrying out a survey of the Gyanvapi Mosque at Varanasi, except the 'wuzukhana' area where a 'shiva linga' was claimed to have been found last year.
Taking on record an undertaking made on behalf of the ASI that no excavation would be done at the site and no damage would be caused to the structure, the Court allowed the survey to take place.
The Court ordered thus while disposing of a petition filed by Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee (which manages the Gyanvapi Mosque at Varanasi) challenging the Allahabad High Court order (of August 3) which permitted the ASI survey.
On July 21, Varanasi District Judge directed the Director of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to conduct a “scientific survey” of the Gyanvapi mosque premises except for the area that was sealed earlier (wuzukhana) to find out if the same has been built over a pre-existing structure of a Hindu temple. The Allahabad HC upheld this order on August 3.