The Supreme Court today refused to entertain new petitions challenging the Places of Worship Act, 1991, and instead permitted the Petitioners to file intervention petitions in the pending cases where notices have been issued.

The Bench comprising of Justice D. Y. Chandrachud and Justice J. B. Pardiwala asked, "how many petitions will be filed?", referring to the at least eight petitions that are filed challenging the same statute.

Senior Advocate Rakesh Dwivedi appeared for Chandra Shekhar, Senior Advocate Vijay Hansaria appeared for Swami Jitendranand Saraswati, Senior Advocate C S Vaidyanathan appeared for Rudra Vikram Singh and Senior Advocate Gaurav Bhatia appeared for Devkinandan Thakur.

The Bench said that all the grounds raised in the petitions can be raised in the impleading petitions and that if any petitioner tries to withdraw the pending petitions, the impleading petitioners will be permitted to be transposed as petitioners.

The Apex Court was hearing six PILs filed by Advocates Chandra Shekhar and Rudra Vikram Singh, retired Army Officer Anil Kabotra, Devkinandan Thakur Ji, Swami Jeetendranand Saraswati, and former Bhartiya Janta Party MP Chintamani Malviya.

The PILs are filed challenging the validity of Sections 2, 3, and 4 of the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act 1991 and declare them as being violative of Articles 14, 15, 21, 25, 26, and 29 as well as the principles of Secularism.

Some other PILs challenging the validity of certain provisions of the 1991 Act, including the PIL filed by Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay are pending before the Supreme Court. The Court had earlier issued notice on the PIL filed by Upadhyay seeking a response from the Centre.