The Telangana High Court on 09.09.2020 issued notices to the Telangana State Government directing to file a counter affidavit to respond to the pleas seeking reconstruction of two demolished mosques at the same places where they stood earlier.
Prayer of the Petitioner
Two mosques were demolished on the Secretariat premises. The petitioner prayed to the Court to direct the State government to construct the two mosques.
Submission of the Petitioner
According to one petitioner, the two mosques were demolished intentionally. He mentioned an earlier writ petition before the Single Judge Bench of the High Court. In that, the Advocate General gave an undertaking. It was stated that a mosque would be built on the Secretariat premises. However, there is no clarity as to whether the mosque will be constructed in the same place or not.
The earlier mosques stood on a larger space viz—647 square yards. However, the Advocate General says that the mosque would be constructed on a 1500 sq. Feet land. The counsel referred to Section 51a of the Wakf Act, 1995. The Wakf property cannot be transferred. Accordingly, the mosque cannot be built at any other place. It has to be built on the same site where it stood, as mandated.
Observation of the Court
The Division Bench consists of Chief Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan. Justice Bollam Vijaysen Reddy was also a part of the Bench.
The Bench mentioned Sec. 51 of Wakf Act, 1991. No Government can deviate from the procedure established by the law. Even the Chief Minister has made a statement in the media that a new Mosque will be built. But it should be following the procedure laid down in Sec. 51 of the Wakf Act, 1991.
The Direction of the Court
Since the mosques were demolished, the Court ordered that suitable land should be allocated for the construction of the mosques. The AG would reply to all the contentions raised by the petitioner counsel. The Court also stated that the Government should safeguard the interest of the petitioner adequately.
The matter was adjourned to October 8.
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