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The Places Of Worship Act, 1991

The Places Of Worship Act:

An appeal against the video survey of Varanasi’s Gyanvapi mosque will be heard by the Supreme Court.

  • The survey, according to a Muslim organisation, is in violation of the places of worship act, 1991.
  • During a court-ordered videography survey of the Gyanvapi Masjid complex by a municipal court in Varanasi, a “shivling” was apparently discovered.
  • The Gyanvapi Masjid is located near the iconic Kashi Vishwanath temple in Uttar Pradesh’s Varanasi.

The Places Of Worship Act, 1991:

  • The Act states that a place of worship’s religious nature must remain 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 litigation, appeals, or other proceedings ongoing before any court or authority on August 15, 1947, involving converting the status of a place of worship, will cease as soon as the law takes effect. There will be no more legal action taken.

The following are exempt from these provisions:

  • Ancient and historical monuments and archaeological sites and remains that are covered by the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958.
  • A suit that has been finally settled or disposed of; and any dispute that has been settled by the parties or conversion of any place that took place by acquiescence before the Act commenced.
  • The Act also does not apply to the place of worship commonly referred to as Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid in Ayodhya.
  • This law will have an overriding effect over any other law in force.

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