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‘Land belongs to Lord Vishveshwar, Aurangzeb had no right over it’: Argument in Allahabad HC in Kashi Vishwanath-Gyanvapi dispute

Advocate Rastogi, the appointed next friend of Lord Vishweshwar, noted that the required evidence to prove that the land belongs to Lord Vishweshar could be procured only through an ASI survey.

In the ongoing hearing of the case related to the Kashi Vishwanath temple-Gyanvapi mosque dispute of Varanasi, the Allahabad High Court on Tuesday ordered the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board to present on record all the documentary evidence pertaining to State surveys wherein allegedly the property was declared as waqf property after advocate Rastogi argued that Aurangzeb had no rights over said land and that the property belonged to Lord Vishveshwar.

Advocate Rastogi, the appointed next friend of Lord Vishweshwar noted that the required evidence to prove that the land belongs to Lord Vishweshar could be procured only through an ASI survey. He said that the property was always a Hindu property as the land belongs to ‘swayambhu’ (self-manifested) Lord Vishweshwar and Aurangzeb had no right to acquire the land.

According to historical accounts, in 1669, Aurangzeb had ordered the demolition of the Vishveshwar temple and commissioned the construction of the Gyanvapi mosque.

Rastogi during the hearing pointed out that the same property was registered as waqf property on February 26, 1944, under three different laws -the Waqf Act of 1936, Waqf Act, of 1954, and the Uttar Pradesh Muslim Waqf Act, 1960. Meanwhile, Advocate Punit Kumar Gupta appearing for the UP Sunni Central Waqf Board mentioned that the old Acts were amended from time to time and the renewal of registration was done accordingly.

Before the bench of Justice Prakash Padia, Advocate Rastogi further pressed the argument that an archaeological survey of the land in question is necessary as the evidence of an ancient temple, which was razed by the Mughal ruler, lies beneath the existing mosque structure. He referred to the Ramjanmabhoomi case and said that in the instant matter too, the evidence could be recovered only from beneath the mosque structure.

The Allahabad HC on March 25 had decided to hold regular hearings in the cases related to the Kashi Vishwanath Temple-Gyanvapi mosque dispute of Varanasi starting March 29. The order was passed by the bench of Justice Prakash Padia while hearing a petition filed by the Anjuman Intazamia Masazid, Varanasi, last year seeking a stay on the proceedings. The Anjuman Intazamia Masazid had also filed applications challenging the maintainability of the civil suit pending before the lower court.

A plea was filed before the Varanasi local court in 1991 by the Ancient Idol of Swayambhu Lord Vishweshwar and 5 others seeking removal of the Gyanvapi Mosque and return of the land to the Hindus. Notably, the suit had already been stayed by the high court, including the lower court order that had directed the Archaeological Survey of India(ASI) to survey the mosque complex.

The Allahabad HC in September 2021 had also held that the lower court should wait for the verdict in the petitions before the High Court and refrain from proceeding further in the matter until the judgement is delivered. The Gyanvapi Mosque is located in the Kashi Vishwanath temple complex. Hindus believe that Vishveshwara still sits in the disputed complex. The Court has adjourned the hearing till April 29.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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