Qutub Minar is a Monument, Status can’t be altered: ASI

The ASI added that there is no evidence to clarify if the iron pillar and purported remains of temples were in their original spot or brought from outside.

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Insight Bureau: The Archaeological Survey of India said in court on Tuesday that there is no evidence to show that the mosque in the Qutub Minar complex was built on a demolished structure. The ASI added that there is no evidence to clarify if the iron pillar and purported remains of temples were in their original spot or brought from outside.

Qutub Minar isn’t a place of worship and alteration of the existing structure is not permissible, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) earlier told a Delhi court on Tuesday.

The plea sought permission to worship the deities.

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ASI said the revival of worship isn’t allowed. It added no community worshipped at Qutub Minar or any of its parts since the time it’s been a protected monument even as there are a number of structures within the complex.

“Fundamental right can’t be availed in violation of any status of the land. the essential principle of protection/conservation is not to allow starting of any new practice in a monument declared and notified as a protected one,” ASI told the court.

The plea was filed on behalf of Jain deity Tirthankar Rishabh Dev and Hindu god Vishnu by advocates Hari Shankar Jain and Ranjana Agnihotri. The petition cites a brief history purportedly displayed by ASI which, consistent with the plea, narrates how 27 temples were demolished by Qutubdin Aibak, a general in Mohamad Ghori’s army, and therefore the Quwwat-ul-Islam mosque was raised by reusing the material.

After hearing both sides, the Court has ordered to list the matter on June 9.

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