Days after Prime Minister Modi performed the Bhoomi Pujan for the construction of Ram Mandir at Ayodhya, Hindu organisations are now gearing up to reclaim the Krishna Janmabhoomi in Mathura. In an effort to liberate the Krishna Janmabhoomi at Mathura, Hindu sadhus have now formed the ‘Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi Nirman Nyas’ on the lines of Ram Mandir trust.
According to the reports, Acharya Devmurari Bapu, the head of the Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi Nirman Nyas, said that they have registered the trust on July 23 on the occasion of ‘Haryali Teej’. Nearly 80 saints from 14 states are part of the new trust, which also includes the 11 saints from Vrindavan.
The Acharya also said that a signature campaign will soon be launched to connect other saints and seers for the ‘liberation’ of the Krishna Janmabhoomi.
“After the signature campaign, we will launch a nationwide movement on the issue. We had started the campaign in February, but we did not proceed further due to the lockdown,” he said.
The Shahi Idgah Mosque stands at the Krishna Janmabhoomi site in the city of Mathura. The Islamic invader Aurangzeb had destroyed the ancient Keshavnath temple and built the Shahi Idgah Mosque on its plinth in 1669.
Krishna Janmabhoomi Nirman Nyas wants to reclaim mosque to build community hall
The Krishna Janmabhoomi Nirman Nyas is now hoping to reclaim to the four-and-a-half-acre land next to the mosque to use it as a ‘Ranga Manch’ for religious and cultural functions organised by it and the temple authorities.
Ever since the Babri mosque was demolished in 1992, the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) has been calling for the ‘liberation’ of Krishna Janmabhoomi in Mathura and the Kashi Vishwanath temple in Varanasi.
Following the Supreme Court verdict on Ram Janmabhoomi case, there has been a growing demand among Hindus to reclaim Kashi and Mathura, along with Ayodhya. Taking back the disputed sites of Kashi Vishwanath temple and Krishna Janmabhoomi temple at Mathura has now become a priority for various Hindu groups in the country.
The Gyanvapi Mosque was built by the Islamic invader Aurangzeb after destroying the original Kashi Vishwanath temple. The remnants of the ancient Hindu temple can still be seen on the walls of the Gyanvapi Mosque. The temple was an earlier restoration of the original Kashi Vishwanath temple, which was destroyed and rebuilt several times in history. The current Kashi Vishwanath was built on a site near to the Mosque in 1777 by Rani Ahilyabai Holkar.
Places of Worship Act – a major hurdle
However, the major roadblock for the Hindus to reclaim its spiritual and cultural sites that have been lost due to Islamic conquest in the past comes in the form of Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991, which was passed by the then PV Narasimha Rao government. The controversial law prohibits conversion of places of worship – like churches, mosques and temples – into places of worship of a different religion.
Section 4 of the Act claims to preserves the “religious character” of a place of worship, as it existed on August 15, 1947. It also says that any court proceeding regarding any such conversion would cease after the Act came into force.
However, there was a relaxation in the law concerning the Ram Janmabhoomi dispute as Section 5 of the Act specifically mandated an exemption to the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute under the law and its court proceedings.
Meanwhile, Acharya Devmurari Bapu, expressing his hope, said, “These are minor hurdles and we will cross the bridges when we come to them. Our resolve to liberate Krishna Janmabhoomi is firm”.