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Gyanvapi case: Two Kashi Vishwanath Mahants debunk ‘Shivling’ claims

Mahant Rajendra Tiwari and Mahant Ganesh Shankar say that they have seen the Wazu tank since childhood and that the stone structure in it cannot be called a “Shivling”

Sabrangindia 24 May 2022

Gyanvapi
Image courtesy: Lallantop


In a revelation that is bound to demolish the right-wing narrative of a “Shivling” being found in the Wazu Khana (ablution tank) of the Gyanvapi mosque, Mahant Rajendra Tiwari of the Kashi Vishwanath temple, that is located adjacent to the mosque has revealed that the structure is indeed a fountain, and not a “Shivling” as claimed by lawyers representing the Hindu petitioners.

In an interview to Aaj Tak, Tiwari said, “I have been seeing that talab (Wazu tank) since I was a child and used to go play there.” He added, “It is not right to call just any stone structure a ‘Shivling’.”

He also said, “I still have a document from the time of Dara Shikoh that was given to my ancestors who were caretakers of the temple permitting them to relocate the actual Shivling. My ancestors removed the Shivling and established it inside the temple where it remains intact and can be seen even today.”

The interview may be watched here:

In fact, he was more concerned about the destruction of actual “Shivlings” for construction of the Kashi Vishwanath corridor. He asked, “When the corridor expansion was taking place they demolished  Shivlings – Karuneshwar Mahadev, Amriteshwar Mahadev, Abhimukteshwar Mahadev, and Chandi-Chandeshwar Mahadev. These are the presiding deities of Kashi. They also demolished statues of the Panch Vinayaks – Durmukh Vinayak, Sumuk Vinayak, Mukh Vinayak, Jau Vinayak and Siddi Vinayak – and removed them from their mool sthan. But no one will speak about this.”

Then, in another interview to Aaj Tak, Mahant Ganesh Shankar, another ascetic involved in prayers at the Kashi Vishwanath temple, revealed that to the best of his knowledge the structure found is a fountain. He said, “We have been seeing it since childhood. Fountains come in various designs and are located in the middle of water bodies. Sometimes they have a stone base. To the best of my knowledge, it is a fountain, and not a ‘Shivling’ as claimed by the Hindu petitioners. Though I have never seen the fountain running in all my life.”

After a video survey was conducted at the Gyanvapi mosque, lawyers representing the Hindu women who had originally moved the petition to offer prayers at the Maa Shringar Gauri temple that is located at the site of the Gyanvapi mosque, had claimed that a “Shivling”, a stone structure of religious significance to Hindus, was found at the site. Following this, a lower court had directed that the area be sealed, a decision also upheld by the Supreme Court, albeit with the caveat that this should not restrict Muslims from accessing and praying at the mosque.

In fact, the priest also dispelled rumours about Muslims allegedly desecrating the “Shivling” by doing “kulla” i.e spitting backwash into the tank. “Nobody does kulla in the tank. They just use the water to wash their hands for Wazu.

An excerpt of the interview was carried by Lallantop on their YouTube channel and may be viewed here:

This is bound to upset the applecart for communal forces who were hoping to create a new controversy to target not only the mosque authorities, but perhaps even instigate communal violence to find an excuse to target the minority Muslim community.  

The case is expected to be heard before a Varanasi court later today.

Related:

Gyanvapi case: SC transfers the case from Trial Court to District Court

Gyanvapi case: Mosque authorities advise devotees against turning up for namaz in large numbers

Varanasi peace activists begin campaign to maintain communal harmony

Halt Gyan Vapi proceedings today: SC to Varanasi Court

Gyanvapi case: Video survey report to be submitted before Varanasi court today

Gyanvapi case: “Shivling” controversy continues

SC orders "Shivling" to be protected without denying Muslims access to the mosque

Gyanvapi case: Varanasi court removes controversial Advocate Commissioner

Shivling ‘found’ on Gyanvapi mosque premises, court orders area sealed

Gyanvapi case: Two more advocate commissioners added to Shringar Gauri survey team

Gyanvapi case: Court to pronounce order in Shringar Gauri temple survey matter today

Gyanvapi case: One out of five withdrawing name from Maa Shringar Gauri temple petition?

Gyanvapi case: Videographic survey of Maa Shringar Gauri temple begins

Gyanvapi case: Allahabad HC stays ASI survey, proceedings before lower court

Gyanvapi case: Varanasi court to hear petition to hold prayers in Shringar Gauri temple

Gyanvapi case: Two Kashi Vishwanath Mahants debunk ‘Shivling’ claims

Mahant Rajendra Tiwari and Mahant Ganesh Shankar say that they have seen the Wazu tank since childhood and that the stone structure in it cannot be called a “Shivling”

Gyanvapi
Image courtesy: Lallantop


In a revelation that is bound to demolish the right-wing narrative of a “Shivling” being found in the Wazu Khana (ablution tank) of the Gyanvapi mosque, Mahant Rajendra Tiwari of the Kashi Vishwanath temple, that is located adjacent to the mosque has revealed that the structure is indeed a fountain, and not a “Shivling” as claimed by lawyers representing the Hindu petitioners.

In an interview to Aaj Tak, Tiwari said, “I have been seeing that talab (Wazu tank) since I was a child and used to go play there.” He added, “It is not right to call just any stone structure a ‘Shivling’.”

He also said, “I still have a document from the time of Dara Shikoh that was given to my ancestors who were caretakers of the temple permitting them to relocate the actual Shivling. My ancestors removed the Shivling and established it inside the temple where it remains intact and can be seen even today.”

The interview may be watched here:

In fact, he was more concerned about the destruction of actual “Shivlings” for construction of the Kashi Vishwanath corridor. He asked, “When the corridor expansion was taking place they demolished  Shivlings – Karuneshwar Mahadev, Amriteshwar Mahadev, Abhimukteshwar Mahadev, and Chandi-Chandeshwar Mahadev. These are the presiding deities of Kashi. They also demolished statues of the Panch Vinayaks – Durmukh Vinayak, Sumuk Vinayak, Mukh Vinayak, Jau Vinayak and Siddi Vinayak – and removed them from their mool sthan. But no one will speak about this.”

Then, in another interview to Aaj Tak, Mahant Ganesh Shankar, another ascetic involved in prayers at the Kashi Vishwanath temple, revealed that to the best of his knowledge the structure found is a fountain. He said, “We have been seeing it since childhood. Fountains come in various designs and are located in the middle of water bodies. Sometimes they have a stone base. To the best of my knowledge, it is a fountain, and not a ‘Shivling’ as claimed by the Hindu petitioners. Though I have never seen the fountain running in all my life.”

After a video survey was conducted at the Gyanvapi mosque, lawyers representing the Hindu women who had originally moved the petition to offer prayers at the Maa Shringar Gauri temple that is located at the site of the Gyanvapi mosque, had claimed that a “Shivling”, a stone structure of religious significance to Hindus, was found at the site. Following this, a lower court had directed that the area be sealed, a decision also upheld by the Supreme Court, albeit with the caveat that this should not restrict Muslims from accessing and praying at the mosque.

In fact, the priest also dispelled rumours about Muslims allegedly desecrating the “Shivling” by doing “kulla” i.e spitting backwash into the tank. “Nobody does kulla in the tank. They just use the water to wash their hands for Wazu.

An excerpt of the interview was carried by Lallantop on their YouTube channel and may be viewed here:

This is bound to upset the applecart for communal forces who were hoping to create a new controversy to target not only the mosque authorities, but perhaps even instigate communal violence to find an excuse to target the minority Muslim community.  

The case is expected to be heard before a Varanasi court later today.

Related:

Gyanvapi case: SC transfers the case from Trial Court to District Court

Gyanvapi case: Mosque authorities advise devotees against turning up for namaz in large numbers

Varanasi peace activists begin campaign to maintain communal harmony

Halt Gyan Vapi proceedings today: SC to Varanasi Court

Gyanvapi case: Video survey report to be submitted before Varanasi court today

Gyanvapi case: “Shivling” controversy continues

SC orders "Shivling" to be protected without denying Muslims access to the mosque

Gyanvapi case: Varanasi court removes controversial Advocate Commissioner

Shivling ‘found’ on Gyanvapi mosque premises, court orders area sealed

Gyanvapi case: Two more advocate commissioners added to Shringar Gauri survey team

Gyanvapi case: Court to pronounce order in Shringar Gauri temple survey matter today

Gyanvapi case: One out of five withdrawing name from Maa Shringar Gauri temple petition?

Gyanvapi case: Videographic survey of Maa Shringar Gauri temple begins

Gyanvapi case: Allahabad HC stays ASI survey, proceedings before lower court

Gyanvapi case: Varanasi court to hear petition to hold prayers in Shringar Gauri temple

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