Saturday, February 24, 2024

SC stays HC order appointing commissioner to inspect Shahi Idgah Masjid

Shaheen Abdulla/Maktoob

The Supreme Court on Tuesday stayed the implementation of the Allahabad HC order for a court-monitored survey of Shahi Idgah Masjid adjoining Krishna Janmabhoomi temple in Mathura.

A bench comprising Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta passed the interim order while issuing notice on a special leave petition filed by the mosque committee.

The bench called the purpose of the appointment of a commissioner as “vague”.

“It has to be specific. This is wrong, you have to be very clear about what you want him for, you leave it to the court. It is an omnibus application.”

The mosque committee has sought rejection of the plaint on the ground that the suit is barred by the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act 1991, LiveLaw reported. The apex court sought the reply of the Hindu outfit Bhagwan Shri Krishna Virajman, and others on the plea of the mosque committee against the HC order on survey of Shahi Idgah.

The matter was then listed for hearing on January 23.

The Hindu side in the Krishna Janmabhumi-Shahi Idgah case had appealed for constituting a commission for the survey, claiming the mosque holds signs suggesting that it was a Hindu temple once.

On December 14, the high court agreed to the appointment of an advocate-commissioner to oversee the survey of the mosque.

Various Hindutva forces have constantly invoked the slogan “Ayodhya Toh Sirf Jhanki Hai, Kashi Mathura Baki Hai” which translates to – “Ayodhya is a mere trailer, Kashi and Mathura are still left”, referring to the Gyanvapi Mosque in Benaras and the Shahi Eidgah Mosque in Mathura.

In 1968, a ‘compromise agreement’ was brokered between the Shri Krishna Janmasthan Seva Sansthan, which is the temple management authority, and the Trust Shahi Masjid Eidgah allowing both places of worship to operate simultaneously. However, the validity of this agreement has now been doubted by some Hindu parties seeking various forms of relief in courts concerning Krishna Janmabhoomi.

The litigants contend that the agreement was made fraudulently and is invalid in law. After the demolition of Babri, Hindu nationalist groups have pledged to remove two historic mosques, the Shahi Masjid in Mathura and the Gyanvapi Masjid in Varanasi.

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