The Delhi high court on Friday ordered the immediate implementation of its July 30 order to demolish the illegal structure near the Jama Masjid Metro station.
Matia Mahal MLA Shoaib Iqbal and his supporters had allegedly built a wall at the spot where certain ruins believed to be of the Mughal-era Akbarabadi mosque were found.
“We expect the Delhi Police and other authorities to comply with this mandate,” a special three-judge bench headed by Justice SK Kaul said.
Dismissing appeals filed by the MLA and the police seeking a review of the July 30 order, the bench made it clear that the North Delhi Municipal Corporation must raze the structure under the Archaeological Survey of India’s (ASI) supervision.
The Delhi Police has been asked to provide protection to the demolition team.
The ASI was on July 20 asked to carry out excavation at the site and ascertain if the ruins were in fact part of the Akbarabadi mosque.
“The police will ensure law and order is maintained at the site and unnecessary rumour mongering and endeavour to give communal overtones is prevented,” the court said.
This comes after the police expressed helplessness in providing protection to the demolition team, citing fears of a communal flare-up.
Refusing permission to Iqbal and his supporters to perform namaz at the site, the court said: “The area has been cordoned. Even if a monument is eventually found, it will be a protected monument and not one where namaz was being rendered regularly as in fact there was no structure but only a park”.