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MP HC directs ASI to submit report on disputed Bhojshala complex by July 15

Bhopal : The Madhya Pradesh High Court on Thursday directed the Archeological Survey of India (ASI) to submit its final report on the disputed medieval-era Bhojshala Temple-Kamal Maula Mosque complex in Dhar district of the state by July 15.

The ASI’s scientific survey of the complex has been completed and it was supposed to submit its findings to the court on July 2.

However, it had sought four more weeks for data compiling.

On July 2, the ASI told the court that the study of the data compiled during the Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR)-Geographic Information System (GIS) survey of the site by the National Geophysical Research Institute (NGRI), Hyderabad, was going on.

Hearing the matter on Thursday, the Indore bench of the Madhya Pradesh High Court directed the ASI to submit its final report by July 15. The matter will be heard next on July 22.

While the Hindus consider Bhojshala, an ASI-protected 11th-century monument, to be a temple dedicated to Vagdevi (Goddess Saraswati), the Muslim community calls it Kamal Maula Mosque.

Following an arrangement made by the ASI in 2003, Hindus perform puja at the Bhojshala premises on Tuesdays, while the Muslims offer namaz in the complex on Fridays.

On March 11, the high court granted permission for a ‘scientific survey’ of the complex by the ASI. On April 29, the deadline was extended by eight weeks, which expired on June 27.

Following the court’s direction, the ASI carried out the survey to ascertain the “true character, nature and form” of the disputed site in the wake of both the Hindus and Muslims staking claim on it.

During the survey, more than 1,700 artifacts were uncovered, including numerous statues, structures, pillars, walls, and murals. The ASI also carried out a ‘carbon dating’ survey of the stones/pillars found during the excavation of the complex premises.

Hindi Website