Gyanvapi:Mosque on the ruins of Vishweshwara?

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Baba mil gaye“, were the chants heard outside the gates of Varanasi’s Gyanvapi Mosque on 16th May. It was the reminiscent cause of the claim to find ‘shivling‘ within the ‘wazookhana‘ of the mosque (a pond for ritual ablution).

Upon filing of a petition by the Hindu believers, a court-mandated survey  the masjid had reportedly been thrown up on April 26. It provided evidence strengthening the suspicion of several Hindu believers and religious leaders that Gyanvapi could have been built on the destroyed foundation of the famed Vishweshwara Temple by Aurangzeb in 1669. Further, the floral motifs on the mosque walls were a clue of sorts, but it was, finally, the apparent discovery of a linga-like structure that had devotees excited about parts of a temple lying buried below.

Soon after, the internet broke out with conflicts and criticism from both the religious believers. Amongst which some accepted, some even spread fake and misleading information about the ‘Gyanvapi Mosque Foundation’. Other old videos and posts helped in misleading the fillers of the Internet.

Though the Varanasi court asked the area to be at standby until the survey report was submitted, the Supreme Court had on May 17 also started to hear a special leave petition filed by the Gyanvapi Mosque committee. While it didn’t order a stay on the survey’s proceedings, it did allow for namaaz to be freely offered inside.

Petition was submitted by the Hindu followers to restrict the free entry of the Muslims within the complex on May 26. It was transferred from the court of the civil judge to a fast track court in Varanasi. The plea will be taken up by the fast-track court judge on Monday (May 30). Further the court has given both the parties a week’s time to file their objections.

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