After a Varanasi Court ordered survey of the Gyan Vapi mosque in Varanasi, and the alleged discovery of a ‘Shivalinga’ therein (highlighted for weeks on end in the sold out Indian media), now a Court in Mathura has ordered survey of the Shahi Idgah, Mathura, on a suit filed by some persons claiming that the mosque was built on a Hindu temple, and should be ordered to be destroyed.
In this connection it may be mentioned that section 4(1) of the Places of Worship Act, 1991 (a law enacted by the Indian Parliament) states
“It is hereby declared that the religious character of a place of worship existing on the 15th day of August 1947 shall continue to be the same as it existed on that day”.
In other words, even if a Hindu temple had been converted into a mosque, or a mosque into a Hindu temple, if this conversion was done before 15.8.1947, it will not be reconverted to its original character (the only exception made was in section 5 of the Act for the Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhumi).
The Places of Worship Act, 1991 was obviously made to put a quietus to disputes over religious structures alleged to have been converted prior to Independence Day in 1947.
There may be many mosques which were originally Hindu temples, and were built on the site by demolishing the latter, but India must move forward, not backward. That is why this law was made by Parliament.
However, despite this clear law, courts in Varanasi and Mathura are proceeding with the suits filed before them, instead of dismissing them straightaway as being barred by section 4(1), and maybe courts in other parts of India will do the same.
This being the attitude of our judiciary, why not a general order be passed by some court in India that all mosques in India, from Kashmir to Kanyakumari be surveyed? Maybe all our mosques were originally Hindu temples, and need a ‘ghar waapasi’.
The BJP MP Sakshi Maharaj has alleged that there are idols in the walls of Jama Masjid, Delhi, and so the mosque should be demolished, and the Hindu temple originally standing on the site be restored
Some people have even claimed that the Taj Mahal was a Hindu temple.
And what about massive poverty, hunger (India has slipped from position number 101 to 107 out of the 121 countries surveyed by Global Hunger Index, worse than neighboring countries like Pakistan, Nepal, and Bangladesh), huge unemployment, skyrocketing price rise, lack of healthcare for the masses, etc, some may ask?
Also Read: Is it Mathura’s Turn?
Don’t talk of minor issues, is the reply. First we have to deal with the major issue.
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