Places Of Worship Act, 1991:
Experts have pointed out that the Places of Worship Act, 1991, prohibited inquiry into religious places such as Kashi and Mathura.
- This comes after a Varanasi court recently ordered an ASI inquiry at the Kashi Vishwanath Temple-Gyanvapi Mosque premises.
- Experts have also questioned if a civil court judge was competent to give such a direction against a law upheld by a Constitutional bench of the Supreme Court.
About the Places of Worship Act, 1991:
- The Act declares that the religious character of a place of worship shall continue to be the same as it was on August 15, 1947.
- It says no person shall convert any place of worship of any religious denomination into one of a different denomination or section.
- It declares that all suits, appeals or any other proceedings regarding converting the character of a place of worship, which are pending before any court or authority on August 15, 1947, will abate as soon as the law comes into force.
- No further legal proceedings can be instituted.
Objectives of the Act:
- To freeze the status of any place of worship as it existed on August 15, 1947.
- To provide for the maintenance of the religious character of such a place of worship as on that day.
- To pre-empt new claims by any group about the past status of any place of worship and attempts to reclaim the structures or the land on which they stood.