Gyanvapi| Supreme Court agrees to hear Hindu side's plea to consolidate all suits on April 21

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Supreme Court was informed today that the Varanasi district judge had deferred its verdict on the consolidation of all suits in the matter for the fourth time.

The Supreme Court today agreed to hear the Hindu's side plea in the Gyanvapi dispute to consolidate all suits, on April 21, 2023.

Advocate Vishnu Shankar Jain had mentioned the matter today before a bench of CJI Chandrachud with Justices Narasimha and Pardiwala.

Jain told court that the Varanasi judge had deferred verdict on the issue for the fourth time.

Five Hindu women have filed a suit before the local court at Varanasi where they have alleged that Maa Shringar Gauri, Lord Ganesha, Lord Hanuman & other visible and invisible deities reside inside the Gyanvapi Complex, therefore, they should be allowed to perform all rituals of these deities inside the complex all year long. Currently, permission is granted to perform the rituals of Hindu pooja at Gyanvapi only once a year.

In December last year, the Allahabad High Court had reserved the order in the revision plea filed by the Committee of Management Anjuman Intezamia Masajid Varanasi against the order passed by the Varanasi District and Sessions Judge rejecting its application challenging the maintainability of the suit by five Hindu women.

On September 12, 2022, Dr. A.K. Vishvesha, District and Sessions Judge, Varanasi, rejected the mosque committee's application filed under Order 7 Rule 11 of the Code of Civil Procedure questioning the maintainability of the suit by the Hindu women.

The judge held that the suit is not barred by any of the three Acts i.e. the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991; the Waqf Act, 1995 and the Uttar Pradesh Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple Act, 1983 as alleged by the mosque committee. 

Notably, another single judge bench of the high court had reserved the judgment in the five petitions that had been clubbed together pertaining to the land dispute at Gyanvapi. The issue in the petitions mainly concerns a survey of the Gyanvapi complex by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI).

Also, the bench of Justice JJ Munir is seized with another civil revision petition filed by the Hindu plaintiffs against the order of District Judge, Varanasi dated October 14, 2022. The district judge had dismissed the Hindu plaintiffs' application seeking a scientific probe of the structure (alleged Shivlingam) found at Gyanvapi, for evaluation of its age.