Court-appointed team fails to survey Gyanvapi mosque

The committee on Saturday filed a petition in the court of civil judge Ravi Kumar Diwakar, urging him to replace Kumar. After hearing the matter, the court directed the plaintiffs and the advocate commissioner to present their arguments on May 9.
The Gyanvapi Mosque in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh,(Shutterstock)
The Gyanvapi Mosque in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh,(Shutterstock)
Updated on May 08, 2022 05:35 AM IST
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By, Hindustan Times, Varanasi

A survey of the Gyanvapi mosque in Varanasi by the local court-appointed advocate commissioner Ajai Kumar and his team could not conducted on Saturday as lawyers of the Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee, which manages the mosque, opposed the exercise in court. The committee on Saturday filed a petition in the court of civil judge Ravi Kumar Diwakar, urging him to replace Kumar.

After hearing the matter, the court directed the plaintiffs and the advocate commissioner to present their arguments on May 9. “We filed a petition in the court of the civil judge, urging the court to remove or replace advocate commissioner Ajai Kumar with a senior lawyer because (on the first day) he conducted the proceeding of the survey as per the wishes of the advocates of the petitioners,” said Abhay Nath Yadav, a lawyer for the mosque committee.

People associated with the mosque management committee didn’t allow the survey team to enter the premises, said Madan Mohan Yadav, a lawyer of Rakhi Singh and four others, who in August 2021 had filed a petition seeking permission for daily worship of Maa Shringar Gauri Sthal in the Kashi Vishwanath-Gyanvapi complex.

SM Yasin, joint secretary of the Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee, had on April 30 said no one would be allowed to enter the mosque for the survey.

On Friday, the survey had begun in the presence of all the parties amid tight security provided by police.

On Saturday, Kumar arrived with his team to survey and make videos of the many deities in the complex, but was opposed by the advocates of the mosque management, who arrived soon after with the court’s directions. Kumar will appraise justice Diwakar of the situation during the next hearing on May 9, Madan Mohan Yadav said.

When Kumar and his team arrived for the survey, a crowd gathered outside the Kashi Vishwanath-Gyanvapi complex and shouted slogans. Police dispersed the crowd and took one person into custody. On Friday, too, protests were held outside the location.

The lawyer representing the mosque committee had expressed dissatisfaction with the way the survey was done on Friday and had said he would move court on Saturday.

Justice Diwakar had on April 26 ordered videography of the Maa Shringar Gauri Sthal by the advocate commissioner. The court had on April 8 appointed Ajai Kumar as advocate commissioner in the case.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2022