New Delhi, Sep 27 (IANS) Delhi Congress working President Rajesh Lilothia has moved the Supreme Court seeking permission to pray at the Guru Ravidas Temple here until reconstruction and restoration of the idols at the holy site .
Lilothia, a former MLA, has filed an application seeking to implead as a party in the ongoing petition filed by former Haryana Congress unit chief Ashok Tanwar seeking reconstruction of the Guru Ravidas Temple in the protected land of Tughlaqabad forest area.
In his plea, Lilothia has pleaded for allowing him to pray at the holy site until the Guru Ravidas Temple is reconstructed. He has also sought directions to the concerned authority to restore the idols at the holy site.
The temple was demolished by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) on August 10, following an apex court order.
Emphasising the argument that the demolition was a violation of the apex court order, Lilothia has also sought to initiate contempt action against the concerned authority for desecrating the holy site.
“That purportedly the demolition of the Guru Ravidas Temple was done on August 10, under the directions of this Court. It is submitted that the Court had said, ‘Let the premises be vacated by tomorrow and the structure be removed by the DDA with the help of the police’.
“However, it is noteworthy to mention that the order dated August 9 nowhere directs for the demolition of the temple,” the Congress leader said in his plea.
The plea filed by advocate Roshan Santhalia told the Supreme Court that Lilothia has immense faith in Saint Guru Ravidas, as well as the holy site at which Guru Ravidas had himself lived.
Stressing enforcement of his right to worship at the holy site, Lilothia informed the top court that the temple at Tughlaqbad was not a part of the list of unauthorized religious places in Delhi, citing the Delhi government’s documents on unauthorised religious places.
He also said that the Guru Ravidas Temple was historical as the land was allotted by Sultan Sikander Lodhi to Guru Ravidas himself in 1509.
“The demolition of this sacred temple has hurt crores of followers across the countries, who were never informed by the authorities before this demolition,” read the plea, which added that apart from carrying out demolition, the DDA officials have also taken away the idols and dried out the holy pond.
“It is rather surprising that the holy pond was dried out, which was not having any unauthorized construction and also not violative of norms for notified forests. It is submitted that these actions are without any authority,” the petitioner said.
Lilothia said that the removal of idols and the desecration and destruction of the temple has anguished crores of Guru Ravidas followers, and he himself, as an ardent follower, is deeply hurt.
He also pleaded that the idols and the pond must immediately be restored at the holy site by the DDA.