ASI asks Varanasi court not to make Gyanvapi survey report public for four more weeks

The Central agency added that if the survey report is unsealed and disclosed in public before the submission of the copy of the said survey report in the HC

Updated - January 03, 2024 07:38 pm IST

Published - January 03, 2024 06:03 pm IST - New Delhi

File photo of Gyanvapi mosque at Kashi Vishwanath corridor.

File photo of Gyanvapi mosque at Kashi Vishwanath corridor. | Photo Credit: SANDEEP SAXENA

The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) on January 3 filed an application in the Varanasi district court urging the Judge to delay the release of its Gyanvapi Survey Report by four weeks.

The agency has made this request in order to get breathing time to file the report in the 1991 suit pertaining the Kashi Vishwanath-Gyanvapi Mosque dispute currently pending in the Allahabad High Court.

The Varanasi court, in July last year, had directed the ASI to Conduct the scientific survey of the Gyanvyapi mosque premises. In compliance of the same, the ASI conducted scientific investigation/ survey work and prepared the detailed report and submitted the same in the Court on on December 12, in sealed cover.

“ASI is also directed by the Allahabad HC to submit the report on the scientific investigation/ survey work in the Civil Court.... in compliance of the order of the HC the survey report submitted earlier by ASI in the suit no. 18 of 2022 in the sealed cover is of vital importance,” the ASI said in its application.

The Central agency added that if the survey report is unsealed and disclosed in public before the submission of the copy of the said survey report in the HC, there is the more chance of spread rumour and misrepresentation in public, which may affect the work of ASI.

“...for the smooth compliance of the order of the HC without any interruption and in a proper manner, it is necessary that this Court may order neither to open the sealed cover and nor to disclose the said survey report to any person of the Suit or any public before the submission the copy of said survey,” the ASI added.

Varanasi district court judge A.K. Vishvesh has adjourned the matter till Thursday.

The survey was ordered by the court after the petitioners claimed the 17th-century mosque was constructed over a pre-existing temple.

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