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Teele Wali Masjid dispute: Lucknow Court dismisses Muslim side plea against lower court’s order on maintainability of the suit by Hindu side

Notably, the disputed structure in question was built during Aurangzeb's regime after Hindu temples dedicated to Bhagwan Shiv and Bhagwan Sheshnag were demolished.

On Wednesday, 28th February, the District Court in Lucknow dismissed a revision plea filed by Imam Mutawalli (Maulana Kari Sayyed Shah Fazlul Mannan) of Teele Wali Masjid. In his plea, Maulana Mannan challenged a September 2023 order issued by a Civil judge upholding the maintainability of the suit filed by the Hindu side for the disputed site. Notably, the disputed structure in question was built during Aurangzeb’s regime after Hindu temples dedicated to Bhagwan Shiv and Bhagwan Sheshnag were demolished.

Additional District Judge Narendra Kumar observed in his order that there was no illegality in the order passed by the Civil Judge. Notably, in 2023, the Civil Judge dismissed the Muslim side’s application filed under Order 7 Rule 11 CPC, questioning the maintainability of the case filed by Nripendra Pandey and Others. In the plea at the District Court, the Muslim side claimed that the Hindu side’s suit was based on “imagination”, and no records were filed to support their claims. They further claimed that the Hindu side’s petition was not maintainable, and the Civil Judge passed the order without implication of mind.

In the order, Justice Kumar opined, “From a perusal of all the pleadings and all the forms available on the file, it is clear that the case in question differs from the normal cases of permanent and mandatory injunction. The facts described are based on mixed questions of law and fact. Therefore, in a cursory manner, in the application under Order-7 Rule-11 CPC, instead of disposing of the case, it would be fair to allow both parties to be heard and to dispose of the application along with evidence, etc. Thus, there is no legal error in the impugned order dated 06.09.2023 of the learned lower court. Therefore, there is no justified basis for interference in it”.

In 2023, eight devotees of Bhagwan Sheshnagesht Teeleshwar Mahadev Virajman and ‘Laxman Teëla Sheshnag Tirath Bhoomi Asthan’, filed a suit seeking protection from interference in performing Puja, Archana, Aarti and recitation of Hanuman Chalisa at Sheshavtar Mandir, Sheshnag Patal Koop, and Sheshnagesht Teeleshwar Mahadev Mandir within Laxman Teela (Teele Wali Mosque premises).

The Hindu side said in their plea that the mosque was built during Aurangzeb’s regime by demolishing a pre-existing Hindu temple and religious structure at the site. Furthermore, they said that the demolition of the temple was in sync with the Islamic practice of destroying temples or Hindu places of worship and then erecting a mosque at the same location.

OpIndia accessed the judgment in the matter. The judgment pointed out that the Hindu side said that the religious character of the Hindu place of worship was altered unlawfully. They said that despite the historical evidence and their attempts to worship as per Hindu rituals at the site, the Muslim side was threatening and preventing them from doing so. Meanwhile, Muslim side claimed that the property belonged to the Waqf Board.

In their submission at the district court, the Muslim side contended that the lower court did not examine the facts and legal principles. They cited Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991, and the Waqf Act, 1995. They claimed the current religious character of the property could not be altered simply by installing idols and offering prayers to the deity.

Justice Kumar noted that the case presented a mix of legal and factual questions requiring a full trial. Consequently, the petition filed by the Muslim side was dismissed, and the orders passed by the lower court in the Teele Wali Masjid case were upheld.

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

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