The Varanasi court on Friday paved way for a scientific survey of the Gyanvapi mosque premises by the Archaeological survey of India.
The survey will exclude the wuzu khana area which was sealed last year on the orders of the Supreme Court after Hindu litigants urged the presence of Shivling.
What exactly is the Gyanvapi mosque case?
The Hindu litigants have claimed that the Gyanvapi mosque was built on the site of the original Kashi Vishwanath temple.
Whereas, Muslims maintain that the mosque was built on Waqf premises and that the Places of Worship (Special Provision) Act, 1991 barred changing the character of any place of worship as it existed on August 15, 1947.
Court’s fresh order in Gyanvapi mosque case
In its order, the court has directed the ASI Director to ‘undertake the scientific investigation/survey/excavation at the property in question i.e. settlement plot number 9130 (Gyanvapi mosque).’
However, court has said that areas sealed by the Supreme Court will be excluded from the survey.
“The Director of ASI is also directed to conduct a detailed scientific investigation by using GPR Survey. Excavation, Dating method and other modern techniques of the present structure to find out….whether the same has been constructed over a pre-existing structure of a Hindu temple,” the court noted.
The court has also asked ASI to investigate the age and nature of construction of the western wall of the building in question through scientific methods.
The court’s order also said that the AS Director must ensure that no damage is done to the ‘structure standing on the disputed land and it remains intact and unharmed.’
“We had filed the application seeking the ASI survey a few months ago. We had argued that the structure was built on a temple under the rule of Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. We had argued that through the ASI survey, this can be proved that the mosque was built after destroying a temple of Baba Bhole Nath,” Jain said.