Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Gyanvapi Mosque: A Varanasi Court on Thursday allowed an archaeological survey into the Gyanvapi Mosque adjoining Kashi Vishwanath Temple, legal website Bar Bench reported. The survey will be conducted by a team of Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and all the expenses relating to the survey will be borne by the government. The court direction came on a plea demanding the restoration of the land on which the mosque stands to Hindus. The plea states that Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb had brought down a portion of the Kashi Vishwanath Temple to build the Gyanvapi Mosque there in 1669. It also says that Aurangzeb had ordered the demolition of schools and temples following which the Vishwanath Temple was also demolished. Therefore, the construction of the Mosque here is illegal. According to the report, the petitioner in his plea states that in the middle of the land of Gyanvapi, there exists since prior to Puranic period a Swambhu Jyothirlinga of Lord Shiva, popularly known as Lord Visheshwar. And a very old temple of Lord Visheshwar had been in existence much before the advent of Muslim rule in India. .and the land appertaining to the said temple is part and partial of the said temple of Lord Visheshwar.the said temple was constructed by the King Vikramaditya about 2050 years ago and duly consecrated the idols of Lord Vishweshwar therein. It is also revealed that due to religious antipathy it was pulled down partly several times in Muslim rules in the country, reads the plaint according to Bar Bench. The Gyanvapi Mosque management committee had opposed the plea. But the Court of Civil Judge Senior Division allowed the ASI to conduct a survey of the place.

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