E SUNDARESA CHETTIAR Vs. N R ABDUL AZEEZ
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
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(1.)The respondents herein brought a suit in representative capacity for injunction restraining the defendant-appellant herein from interfering with the right of offering worship on the land comprised in survey no. 187. The case of the plaintiff-respondents was that on disputed land there existed a dilapidated mosque which was subsequently fallen down. On the premise that once a mosque, always a mosque, the respondents claimed right to offer worship on the land and also to use it as burial ground. The case of the appellant was that the land was purchased by his father in court auction in the year 1935 and since then they have been in possession over the land. It was denied that there was any mosque much less a public mosque existed on the said plot of land. The trial court, after considering the entire evidence on record, recorded a finding of fact that there never existed any mosque on the said plot of land. Consequently, the suit was dismissed. The said decree of the trial court was affirmed by the first appellate court. However, plaintiff's second appeal was allowed by the High Court and the suit stood decreed. It is against the said judgment of the high Court, the defendant is in appeal before us.
(2.)Learned counsel appearing for the appellant urged that the High Court committed a serious mistake of law in interfering with the concurrent finding of fact recorded by the courts below that there never existed a public mosque on the disputed land and, therefore, the order deserves to be set aside. We find merit in the contention.
(3.)The High Court framed the following questions of law for deciding the second appeal on merit:
"Whether the disputed structure in s. no. 187 is a public mosque and if so whether the appellant plaintiffs and other Muslims are to be protected from interference by the defendant in offering worship therein -
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