Friday, December 1, 2023

Allahabad High Court directs ASI to conduct scientific survey of ‘Shiva Linga’

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The Allahabad High Court has directed the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to conduct a scientific survey using modern techniques of the purported ‘Shiva Linga,’ which was found inside the Gyanvapi Mosque complex of Varanasi, so as to ascertain its age.

The Single-Judge Bench of Justice Arvind Kumar Mishra-I on Thursday allowed a revision plea moved by four women Hindu worshippers.

The women worshippers had challenged the October 14 order of the Varanasi court, which rejected their petition

The Anjuman Masjid committee, which manages the Gyanvapi Mosque, has been calling the structure found inside the mosque premises in question as a ‘Fauwara/Fountain’. On the other hand, the Hindu worshippers have been calling the structure as ‘Shiva Linga’.

On November 5 last year, the court had issued a notice to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) essentially asking the DG, ASI to give her opinion by November 21 on whether the investigation of the structure found at site, subject matter of Original Suit No.18 of 2022 if examined through the methods of Carbon Dating, Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR), Excavation and other methods adopted to determine its age, nature and other relevant information is likely to damage it or a safe evaluation about its age can be done.

While challenging the October 14 order of Varanasi court, the Revisionists (Laxmi Devi and three others) had sought the High Court’s direction to the ASI to conduct a scientific probe of the ‘Shiva Linga’ through the methods of Carbon Dating, Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR), and Excavation.

They further sought a direction to the ASI to give its opinion through the issue of a Commission for scientific investigation to determine the age, nature, and other constituents of the Shiv Lingam, employing the above mentioned methods.

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