Court stops work on new temple

The Gujarat High Court has ordered the influential Hindu Swaminarayan sect to stop construction of a temple on a disputed land in Damnagar town of Amreli district in the Saurashtra region of Gujarat.

By Our Correspondent

Published: Sun 24 Jun 2012, 9:13 AM

Last updated: Fri 3 Apr 2015, 11:45 AM

The Islamic Relief Committee (IRC) had filed a public interest litigation (PIL) claiming the land was meant for an old graveyard in the town.

The court also issued notices to authorities concerned, State of Gujarat, the Wakf Board, the Swaminarayan sect and Muslim outfits which are party to the civil suits pending in the court in this regard and posted the hearing after a fortnight.

According to IRC counsel R K Munshi, the PIL opposed the permission granted to the sect by the local civic body to construct a wall on the land which was entangled in a long legal battle, adding that there was a dispute over the said land and many civil suits are pending in different courts.

Even as the District Collector was reviewing the matter, the municipal authorities granted permission for construction of the wall.

The plot that has been caught in legal tangle is a graveyard. After plotting of land, the state government and local authorities gave two plots to the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha. However, the Damnagar Muslim Jamat is claiming the entire graveyard land.

Incidentally, the issue also took a violent turn recently and nine people were injured when riots erupted among members of the two communities over the plot of land.

However, when the matter came up for hearing, the court issued a status quo order over one part of the land and posted further hearing of the matter after a fortnight.

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