Gyanvapi complex case: ASI to submit scientific survey report before Varanasi court tomorrow

Nov 17, 2023

The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is set to submit the report of the scientific survey of the Gyanvapi mosque complex before the Varanasi court tomorrow.

The Varanasi court had earlier given additional time to the ASI for the completion of the scientific survey of the mosque and submit its report. District Judge A K Vishvesh passed the order on November 2 to extend the deadline for the submission of the survey report till November 17, said Central government counsel Amit Srivastava.

The court was informed that the ASI has completed its survey, but it may take some more time for compiling the report along with the details of the equipment used in the survey work and requested for additional time, Srivastava said.

What is the case about?

The ASI is carrying out a scientific survey of the Gyanvapi mosque complex, next to the Kashi Vishwanath Temple here, to determine whether the 17th-century mosque was constructed over a pre-existing temple. 

The ASI survey began in July after the Allahabad High Court upheld a Varanasi district court order and ruled that the step is "necessary in the interest of justice" and will benefit both the Hindu and Muslim sides.

The mosque committee had also moved the Supreme Court against the high court's order. The apex court had on August 4 refused to stay the high court's order on the ASI survey. In its order, the apex court, however, asked the ASI not to carry out any invasive act during the survey. 

The ASI has been granted till November 6 to complete the survey of the mosque complex. Meanwhile, District Government Counsel Mishra said that a petition regarding handing over of keys of a basement at the Gyanvapi mosque complex to the Varanasi district magistrate was filed in the court of Civil Judge (Senior Division) Nitesh Kumar Sinha in September.