Gyanvapi-Shringar Gauri case: Pleas filed in HC, district court for protection of Hindu symbols in complex

Two pleas have been filed in the Varanasi district court and the Allahabad High Court seeking protection of “Hindu signs and symbols” in the Gyanvapi mosque complex in Varanasi.

This comes as the Allahabad High Court is scheduled to pronounce its order on Thursday on a plea against a Varanasi district court order directing the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to conduct a survey to determine if the Gyanvapi mosque was built on a temple.

Rakhi Singh, one of the petitioners in the Gyanvapi-Shringar Gauri case, filed the plea in the Varanasi district court on Wednesday, accusing the Muslim side of destroying Hindu symbols and demanding protection of the complex.

The petition was filed in the court of District Judge Ajay Krishna Vishwesh. The court has fixed August 4 for hearing the matter, senior government counsel Rajesh Mishra said.

In the public interest litigation filed before Allahabad High Court, the petitioners have sought directions to the state government and the district administration to seal the entire Gyanvapi mosque premises without affecting the ASI survey so that “no damage can be done by non-Hindus to Hindu sign/symbol” found during the survey

It also urged that non-Hindus may be restrained from entering the “old temple area” in the complex till the disposal of suits pending in the district court of Varanasi on the Gyanvapi issue.

The petition is filed by Jitender Singh “Visen”, Rakhi Singh and a few others.

Vishwa Vedic Sanatan Sangh chief Jitendra Singh Bisen said that in the plea in the district court, Rakhi Singh has accused the Muslim side of destroying Hindu symbols on the Gyanvapi premises and demanded protection of the entire complex to ensure that these symbols are not lost.

The entry of Muslims into Gyanvapi should be banned immediately so that the work of archaeological survey can be done without any hindrance, Bisen said.

Rakhi Singh is also one of the founder members of Vishwa Vedic Sanatan Sangh.

Meanwhile, the secretary of the Intezamia Masjid Committee, Mohammad Yasin, said that they have not yet received a copy of the new petition.

“Once we receive the copy of the petition, our legal team will prepare its reply,” he said.

Rakhi Singh is one of the five Hindu women plaintiffs who filed the Shringar Gauri-Gyanvapi case, seeking permission for worship at Maa Shringar Gauri Sthal.

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The Allahabad High Court had on July 27 reserved till August 3 its verdict on a plea against the ASI survey. Chief Justice Pritinker Diwaker also ordered that the stay on the ASI survey will continue till August 3.

The high court was hearing the plea filed by Anjuman Intezamia Masjid, which manages the mosque.

It had moved the high court on July 25, a day after the Supreme Court halted the ASI survey till 5 pm on July 26, allowing time for the mosque management committee to appeal against the lower court’s order.

A Varanasi court had earlier directed the ASI to conduct the survey, including excavations, wherever necessary, to determine if the mosque was built at a place where a temple existed earlier.

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