A petition was filed by the secretary of the Basant Nagar Mosque. It was alleged that in November 2019, the Police had placed barricades in front of the entrance of the Mosque.
Petition also says that three constables had been placed at the barricade and this was causing inconvenience to the devotees who wished to enter the Mosque.
The petitioner requested the Court to direct the Police to place the barricade a few meters ahead or behind the Mosque.
Proceedings before the Court:-
The Wakf Board stated that their Counsel had visited the spot on 17.09.2020 and found that three barricades were placed at the spot.
The checking starts in the afternoon and continues till midnight. Images taken from Google Earth maps were placed on record as evidence.
Learned Counsel for the Delhi police submitted that the barricades do not block the road. The Counsel stated that the Police had received information that there have been incidents of snatching, robberies and accidents in the area, and that is why barricades were placed.
It was further submitted that the barricades were put up to check the traffic that comes from the Vasant Vihar area.
Counsel for the Delhi Police informed the Delhi High Court that the barricades were placed 10 meters from the Mosque gate.
It was argued before the Court that as per the complaint from the Defence Estate Office defence land near the mosques has been encroached upon and the Police were trying to curb encroachment in the area.
The reasoning of the Delhi High Court:-
After going through the images from Google Earth and images placed on record by the Delhi Police, the Hon’ble Court observed that there was considerable variance between the versions of both the parties.
The decision of the Delhi High Court
Following directions were issued by the Court:-
- Police should ensure that the barricading is placed at least 10 metres before or behind the entrance of the Mosque.’
- The administration of the Mosque was directed to ensure that there was no crowding near the shops of the Mosque, so there is no obstruction for traffic going towards Gurgaon.
- In case the Police want to check vehicles in the area, then they should ensure that people visiting the Mosque are not disturbed.
Title: Mohd Jafar vs Union Of India
Case No. W.P.(C) 4589/2020 & CM APPLs. 16586/2020, 16587/2020, 26728/2020
Date Of Order: 20.10.2020
Coram: Hon’ble Justice Pratibha M Singh