DELHI: The Delhi High Court today ordered that status quo be maintained in connection with alleged illegal constructions close to Jama Masjid here.
Justice Manmohan also sought replies from the Centre and Delhi government by May 26 on a plea against the alleged illegal constructions.
The court also issued notice to the Archaeological Survey of India, Delhi Development Authority, North Delhi Municipal Corporation, Delhi Wakf Board and the people engaged in the alleged unauthorised work.
The court directed the North Delhi Municipal Corporation to photograph and video-graph the area to ascertain the state of affairs.
The order was passed on the plea by a shopkeeper of Meena Bazaar here alleging that lot of unauthorised occupants and construction mafia were encroaching upon the historical site.
The petition alleges that large scale unauthorised construction has been discovered at 'Dargah of Hare Bhare Shah and 'Sufi Sarmad Shaheed' adjoining the monument.
The petitioner, Mohd Aftab, has claimed the "area of Jama Masjid is depleting and being encroached upon by unauthorised occupants, construction mafia, public land grabbers, thereby, damaging the whole serenity of the area...."
Advocate Shoaib Haider accepted notice on behalf of the Delhi government and said that Delhi Police be made a party.
The court, thereafter, asked the petitioner to make the police a party to which he agreed.
Aftab in his petition has also alleged that despite repeated assurances by the municipal body as well as approval of grant of Rs 145 crore, later increased to Rs 163 crore, for redevelopment of the area, nothing has been done.
Apart from restraining the unauthorised construction, the petition also seeks demolition of all illegal structures there.
The petitioner has also sought action against officials concerned, claiming they failed in diligent and dutiful discharge of their duties.