Petition seeking building of Ravidas temple filed in SC
New Delhi, Aug 27 (IANS) A petition was filed in the Supreme Court on Tuesday seeking direction to allow construction of a Guru Ravidas temple in the Tughlaqabad forest area here where it was demolished.
The petition was filed by Ashok Tanwar, President of the Haryana Pradesh Congress Committee and a former MP, and former Haryana Minister Pradeep Jain Aditya.
In the plea, they sought enforcement of the Right to Worship which they argued had been denied to them due to the razing of the Ravidas temple.
Both men said they were long-standing devotees of Guru Ravidas and sought restoration of the idol of Guru Ravidas that was taken away from the site.
They claimed that the land for the shrine was given by Sultan Sikander Lodhi to Guru Ravidas in 1509.
"The land at the site is of utmost historical and religious importance to all followers of Guru Ravidas as the Guru himself had lived at the site," the plea said.
The temple was demolished on August 10 by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), which reports to the central government.
The petitioners said the site itself was pious and had been worshipped for 500-600 years and was protected as per the provisions of the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991. Tanwar said the temple was 600 years old.
"Hence, no violation can be caused by a historical structure, which has come under Green Zone... The above temple/Guru Dham was in Jahapanah City Forest, which is actually an urban park where people go for morning walk," the petition said.
The plea said that the followers of Guru Ravidas were Hindus from oppressed communities and had been historically discriminated.
He said medieval saints like Guru Ravidas were part of the Sufi culture and a common heritage of the sub-continent. Accordingly, Kartarpur Sahib had been protected in Pakistan.
The top court earlier asked the Punjab, Haryana and Delhi governments to maintain law and order after observing that protests had started over the razing of the temple in Tughlaqabad forest area.