"Gyanvapi mosque will be taken over bit by bit": Muslim side tells Supreme Court

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The masjid committee has expressed its apprehensions against pooja being conducted in the Vyas Tehkhana in the souther cellar of the mosque, saying that bit by bit they would lose the entire mosque

The Anjuman Intezamia Masajid Committee today expressed its apprehension before the Supreme Court of India of the Gyanvapi Mosque being taken over bit by bit. 

This statement was made by Senior Advocate Huzefa Ahmadi while referring to the order allowing 'Pooja' in 'Vyas Tehkana' or the southern cellar of the Gyanvapi.

"An overwhelming case is made out to stay this order..the fact that any pooja was conducted in the cellar is also an averment..now there are three applications pending for other areas to do things..the serious apprehension is that bit by bit we will lose the entire mosque..", a CJI Chandrached led bench has been told.

Ahmadi further referred to the order saying it was an egregious order. "..with all due respect..please see the order..they are allowing the puja to happen within the mosque...we have serious apprehension", he added.

CJI Chandrachud also sought clarification from the parties asking if he was correct in saying that the entrance to the cellar does not affect the namaz going on in the mosque on the north side stairs.

The hearing will now continue post lunch.

In February, the Allahabad High Court had denied the Masajid Committee's plea for an interim stay on 'Pooja' in 'Vyas Tehkana'.

Shortly after the January 31 order of the Varanasi district court allowing Hindu devotees to worship in 'Vyas Tehkana', the pooja began. 

Challenging the local court's directions, the mosque management committee moved the Supreme Court, which redirected it to the Allahabad High Court

On January 31, the Varanasi District Court granted permission to priest Shailendra Kumar Pathak, who filed a plea seeking direction to allow him the right to worship Hindu deities in the cellar of the Gyanvapi.

Pathak had submitted before the District Court that his maternal grandfather, priest Somnath Vyas, conducted prayers in the Gyanvapi cellar until 1993 when it was shut down by the Uttar Pradesh Government.

Case Title: Committee of Management Anjuman Intezamia Masajid Varanasi vs. Shailendra Kumar Pathak