Is Mughal Mosque Near Qutub Minar A Protected Monument Delhi High Court Asks Archeological Survey Of India

By Neha Bhardwaj July 23, 2023 2:47 PM IST

Qutub Minar Mughal Mosque: The Delhi High Court directed the Archaeological Survey of India to inform whether the Mughal mosque located in the Qutub Minar complex is a protected monument or not. The court was hearing a petition filed against the ban on offering Namaz in the mosque. The court said that if the mosque is included in the list of protected monuments, then it should also be clarified whether prayers can be offered there or not.

The management committee of the mosque had filed this petition against the ban on offering Namaz, on which Justice Prateek Jalan was hearing. The court has asked the parties to file their written submissions within three weeks, along with copies of the authorities they wish to rely on. Now the court will hear this matter on 13 October.

Court asked for records from ASI
The Court, in its order dated July 20, said that on the basis of these submissions and the preliminary submissions made by the counsel for the ASI, it appears that, along with other issues, whether the mosque is included in the protected area under the notification of January 24, 1914, whether there can be a ban on offering prayers there. The mosque in question, called the Mughal Masjid, is located inside the Qutub Minar complex but separate from the Quwwatul Islam mosque, a matter pending before the Saket court.

The petitioner gave this argument
The petitioner committee, appointed by the Delhi Waqf Board, said the mosque was not among the protected monuments notified by the ASI in its 1914 notification and prayers were offered there till May 13, 2022. He claimed that last year, without any notice, the authorities had stopped prayers at the mosque and the management committee was not even informed about it. The committee termed this decision as illegal and arbitrary.

At the same time, the Archaeological Department said that in the present case no prayers were offered inside the Mughal mosque since it was declared a protected monument. Despite this, the court has asked the department to clarify the position.

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