AIMPLB Files Petition in SC Against Petitions Claiming Invalidity of Places Of Worship Act


Khushi Bajpai

Published on: October 10, 2022 at 20:33 IST

The Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991 is a “progressive legislation” in line with the secular norms of Indian polity, according to the AIMPLB, and it fosters unity, public tranquility, and peace among the various sectors of the population.

AIMPLB filed a petition with the Supreme Court in opposition to certain claims that the Worship Act’s provisions are invalid.

The Supreme Court has received a motion from the All-India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) opposing a number of petitions that question the legality of some provisions of a 1991 law that forbid the filing of lawsuits to reclaim a place of worship or seek a change in its character from what existed on August 15, 1947.

On October 11, a bench presided over by Chief Justice UU Lalit is slated to hear a number of petitions contesting the legality of certain parts of the 1991 statute.

The Muslim body argued in their application, which was submitted through attorney MR Shamshad, that the Act is based on fundamental, immutable principles of the Constitution and does not violate the cultural rights of any group of people.

The AIMPLB argued that any attempt to nullify the fundamental goals, objectives, or tenets upon which the aforementioned Act is based would be “unconstitutional and consequently void.”

The impleadment application submitted in the case of “Vishwa Bhadra Purjari Purohit Mahasangh” and others said that the litigants have a “political objective” and that hearing the petitions contesting the law’s legitimacy will only lead to issues on the ground.

“The Act is envisaged to foster harmony among the diverse parts of the population, prevent the breach of public order, and promote public quiet and peace,” it was further stated.

Therefore, the Act does not infringe upon the cultural rights of any group of people. The Act encourages our nation’s diversity of cultures by allowing for peaceful coexistence.

The Act’s goal of fostering syncretic harmony is accomplished.

The fundamental spirit of Indian culture is the Ganga-Jamuna Tehzeeb.

The AIMPLB asserts that there have been numerous occasions throughout history when Buddhist and Jain places of worship were changed into Hindu temples, Muslim places of worship were changed into Gurudwaras, and Hindu places of worship were changed into mosques.

The Muslim organization added that the Act’s goal and objective were to eradicate dated and antiquated claims regarding places of worship.

It stated that any disagreement over a place of worship between various populations is extremely sensitive, puts the public at risk, and undermines the peace and tranquility of society.

“Our country has witnessed blood baths,” it said, referring to the conclusions of the Srikrishna Commission, which was established to investigate the reasons behind the riots that occurred in Mumbai in December 1992 and January 1993 as well as the reasons behind the bomb blast that occurred in March 1993.

According to the report, the Commission’s unmistakable conclusion is that the December 1992 riots were brought on by Muslims’ resentment over the “shameful act of demolishing of the Babri Masjid” on December 6, 1992.

On September 9, the Supreme Court stated that a five-judge constitution bench might hear arguments challenging the legality of certain elements of a statute from 1991.

It also ordered the Centre to respond to the PILs contesting the law.

On March 12 of last year, the Supreme Court requested the Center’s answer to one of the arguments made by attorney Ashwini Upadhyay contesting the legality of certain portions of the statute that uphold the ownership and character of holy sites as they were on August 15, 1947.

The 1991 provision is an Act to prevent any place of worship from being converted and to ensure that any such place of worship maintains its religious character.

The law had made only one exception- on the dispute pertaining to the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid at Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh.

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