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Places Of Worship Act Not Applicable To 2020 Suit On Sri Krishna Janambhoomi: Shahi Idgah Dispute

Sai Krishna ,
  23 May 2022       Share Bookmark

Court :
In the Court of District Judge, Mathura
Brief :

Citation :
Civil Revision No. 02/2021

Case Title:
Sri Krishna Janmabhoomi – Shai Idgah Dispute

Date:
19/05/2022

Bench:
JUSTICE Shri Rajeev Bharti

Parties:
Appellant –

  1. BhagwanShrikrishnaVirajman, at Katra Keshav Dev Khewat No. 255, in Maujja Mathura Bazaar city and District Mathura,
  2. AsthanShrikrishnaJanam Bhoomi, Katra Keshav Dev Khewat No. 255, in Maujja Mathura Bazaar city and District Mathura.
  3. Ms. Ranjan Agnihotri D/o Late Rajendra Kant Agnihotri, aged about 51 years, R/o. 512/695 Balda Road, Nishatganj, Near Nishantganj Police Chowki, Lucknow
  4. Pravesh Kumar S/o Sri Rishi Pal Singh
  5. Rajesh Mani Tripathi S/o Sri Chandra Bhushan Mani Tripathi.
  6. Karunesh Kumar Shukla S/o Sri Ram Narayan Shukla.
  7. Shivaji Singh S/o Late Ram Narayan Singh, aged about 60 years
  8. Tripurari Tiwari, S/o Shri Rajeshwar Tiwari.

Respondent –

  1. U.P. Sunni Central Waqf Board, through Chairman, 3 - A Mall Avenue Lucknow -226001
  2. Committee of Management, Trust Alleged Shahi Masjid Idgah, Through Secretary, DeegDarwaza, District Mathura, Uttar Pradesh-281001
  3. Shree Krishna Janambhoomi Trust, Mathura, through managing trustee, near Deeg Gate Chouraha, KatraKeshavdev, Janam Bhumi Temple, Mathura, Uttar Pradesh-281001
  4. Shree Krishna JanmSthanSewaSansthan, through Secretary, Katra Keshav Dev, Deeg Gate, Mathura Bazaar city and District Mathura, Uttar Pradesh-281001

Subject

A civil suit was filed by the petitioners under the court of Civil Judge Senior Division, Mathura stating that the compromise deed between the Shri Krishna Janmasthan Seva Sansthan and Trust Masjid Idgah was fraudulent. The suit was dismissed thereby the present revision suit was filed by the petitioners challenging the maintainability of the suit.

Important Provisions

Section 4 of Place of Worship Act - Declaration as to the religious character of certain places of worship and bar of jurisdiction of courts.

Section 4(3)(b) - any suit, appeal or other proceeding, with respect to any matter referred to in sub-section (2), finally decided, settled or disposed of by a court, tribunal or other authority before the commencement of this Act.

Overview

  • A trust was created by Jugal Kishore Birla in the name of Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi on 21/02/1951 and was registered on 09/03/1951.
  • The property was of 13.37 acres and was dedicated to the deity and provided to Shri Krishna Janmbhoomi Trust.
  • A Shri Krishna Janmasthan Seva Sansthan had entered into a compromise deed with the Trust Masjid Idgah.
  • The compromise decree between Shri Krishna Janmasthan Seva Sansthanand Shahi Idgah Trust was sought cancellation by the petitoners stating it was fraudulent in nature as it gave the property of trust to the trust Masjid idgah.
  • It was stated that the Shri Krishna Janmasthan Seva Sansthan were not the real owners and had no power to enter into a compromise deed with Trust masjid Idgah with respect to a land that was owner by Shri Krishna Janmbhoomi Trust.
  • A suit was filed under the Mathura civil court in the year 2020 and was rejected stating that the plaintiffs were worshippers of Lord Krishna and thereby had no right to file a suit.
  • The above dismissed suit was challenged again through a revision by the petitioners.

Issues raised

  1. Whether the suit to remove the Shai Idgah Masjid built on the Shrikrishna Janam Bhoomi land was maintainable?
  2. Whether worshippers of a deity had the right to file a suit?
  3. Whether the Place of Worships Act, 1991 was applicable to the suit?

Judgment Analysis

The court stated that the worshipper a next friend of a deity had the right to file a suit. It relied upon the judgment provide in M.Siddiq vs. Mahant Suresh Das & Ors. wherein it was held that the worshipper had the right to file the suit. In Bishwanth and Anr Vs. Sri Thakur Radha Ballabhji it was held that a suit canbe filed by a deity through the worshipper for declaration of title and possession and can represent an idol when a shebait or manager of the temple is acting adversely to the interest of the deity.

The section 4(3)(b) of place of worship act 1991 stated that the bar mentioned under Section 4 would not apply for any order judgments provided before the commencement of the act.

In M/s Hotel Shiv Shakti through Partner Sri Narain Tiwari and others vs. U.P. Finance Corp. through Regional Manager and others, it was observed that the impugned order was passed under Order VII Rule 11 C.P.C. The effect of the order was the rejection of the plaint itself. Against the order impugned, appeal was maintainable as the plaint was rejected in terms of section 2(2) C.P.C.

The revision suit against the impugned order given earlier was maintainable and the determination of the fraud and collusion in the compromise decree would be decided after taking the evidence adduced by both the parties to the suit during the trial.

Conclusion

The court concluded by setting aside the impugned order dated 30/09/2020 and advised the trial court to hear both sides and pass an appropriate order.

Learn the practical aspects of CrPC HERE, CPC HERE, IPC HERE, Evidence Act HERE, Family Laws HERE, DV Act HERE

Click here to download the original copy of the judgement

 
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