The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday dismissed a revision plea challenging the maintainability of the petition filed by Hindu plaintiffs seeking permission to worship inside the Gyanvapi mosque, reported Live Law.
The revision plea had been filed the Anjuman Intazamia Committee, which manages the mosque.
Five Hindu women had last year filed a plea seeking rights to worship inside the mosque compound. They had claimed that an image of Hindu deity Shringar Gauri exists at the mosque.
The mosque committee had first filed an application against the maintainability of the Hindu plaintiffs’ plea before the Varanasi district court. The plea had been filed under Order 7 Rule 11 of the Code of Civil Procedure, which says that a petition can be dismissed if it does not show a cause of action or is barred by law.
The petitioners before the district court had argued that the plea filed by the Hindu side is not maintainable as it violates the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991, which states that the religious character of a place of worship as it existed on August 15, 1947 cannot be changed.
However, the Varanasi court had held in September that Hindu plaintiffs seeking the right to pray inside the Gyanvapi mosque premises is maintainable and can be heard further.
The court held the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991, cannot bar the plaintiffs from worshipping at the disputed site as they said that they had been offering prayers even after August 15, 1947. The court had also noted that the plaintiffs have not demanded that the place of worship be converted from a mosque to a temple.
Following the district court’s order, the mosque committee had moved the High Court.