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SC Refuses To Stop Hindu Prayers In Gyanvapi Mosque’s Southern Cellar

The Apex Court has refused to stay the Allahabad High Court order which had upheld the Varanasi district court's order allowing Hindus to perform prayers of deities inside the ‘Vyas Tehkhana’, southern celler of Gyanvapi mosque.

PTI
Supreme Court on Gyanvapi Mosque | Photo: PTI
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Supreme Court on Monday refused to stop Hindu prayers in the southern cellar of the Gyanvapi mosque in Uttar Pradesh’s Varanasi. The Apex Court refused to stay the Allahabad High Court order which had upheld the Varanasi district court's order allowing Hindus to perform prayers of deities inside the ‘Vyas Tehkhana’, southern celler of Gyanvapi mosque.

However, the Top Court ordered status quo on the religious observances by the Hindus inside the mosque premises.

“Bearing in mind the fact that the ‘namaz’ is offered in Gyanvapi mosque by Muslim community unhindered after the orders dated January 17 and January 31 (allowing puja inside Tehkhana) and the offering of ‘puja’ by Hindu priest is confined to the area of ‘Tehkhana’, it is appropriate to maintain status-quo so as to enable both the communities to offer worships in the above terms,” ANI quoted the bench as saying.

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) D Y Chandrachud also sought response of priest Shailendra Kumar Pathak Vyas by April 30 on the plea of the mosque committee, PTI reported.

The bench, which also comprised Justices J B Pardiwala and Manoj Misra, was hearing the plea of the mosque committee which manages the affairs of the Gyanvapi mosque in Varanasi.

Earlier, the high court, on February 26, had dismissed the committee's plea in which it had challenged the district court's January 31 order allowing Hindus to offer prayers in the cellar.

While dismissing the plea of the mosque committee, the high court had observed that the Uttar Pradesh government's 1993 decision of stopping worship rituals inside the "Vyas Tehkhana" –located at the southern cellar of the Gyanvapi -- was "illegal".

Meanwhile, the Apex Court has fixed the plea of Gyanvapi mosque committee against nod for Hindu ‘puja’ in southern cellar of the mosque for final disposal in July.

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