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SC transfers Gyanvapi civil suit to Varanasi district judge, says experienced officer needed

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By PTI Updated: May 20, 2022 7:37 pm
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Varanasi: Security personnel stand guard outside the closed gate of Gyanvapi morsque to offer Friday prayers, in Varanasi, Friday, May 20, 2022. The mosque, facing a controversy, was to be closed as more than 1200 Muslim people reached for the prayers while its capacity is 700. (PTI Photo) (PTI05_20_2022_000117B)

New Delhi, May 20 (PTI): The Supreme Court Friday transferred the civil suit filed by Hindu devotees on Gyanvapi mosque from civil judge (senior division) to district judge, Varanasi saying looking at the complexities and sensitivity of the issue, it is better for a senior judicial officer to handle the case.

A bench of Justices DY Chandrachud, Surya Kant, and PS Narasimha said that it is not casting any aspersion on the civil judge (senior division) who was earlier dealing with the suit.

The top court directed the district judge to first decide the application under Order 7 Rule 11 of CPC (on maintainability) filed by the Mosque committee saying the civil suit is barred by a law of Parliament be decided upon the transfer of papers from the civil judge (senior division).

The top court said that its earlier interim order of May 17 directing protection of the area where Shivling’ is said to be found and allowing Muslims to offer Namaz’ in mosque premises shall remain in operation till the maintainability of the suit is decided by the district judge and thereafter for eight weeks to allow the aggrieved parties approach the higher court.

The bench also directed the district magistrate to make adequate arrangements for wazu’ (ablution) for the Muslims coming for offering Namaz in the mosque in consultation with the parties involved in the dispute.

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By PTI Updated: May 20, 2022 7:37:42 pm