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  • 17 March, 2021

  • 3 Min Read

Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act,1991

  • The Supreme Court asked the Centre to respond to a plea challenging the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991.

About Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act 1991:

  • The Act was passed in 1991.
  • It seeks to maintain the “religious character” of places of worship as it was in 1947.
  • The Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute was exempted from the Act.

Key Provisions:

  • It says that no person shall convert any place of worship of any religious denomination into one of a different denomination or section.
  • All cases for converting the character of a place of worship that were pending on August 15, 1947 will stand abated with the enforcement of this act.
  • However, legal proceedings can be initiated if the change of status of religious character took place after the cut-off date of August 15, 1947.
  • It prescribes 3 year imprisonment and a fine for breach of the provisions of the act.


  • It says that the Act shall not be applied to Ram Janma Bhumi Babri Masjid dispute.
  • Act also exempts:
    • Any place of worship, that is an ancient and historical monument or an archaeological site.
    • It must be covered by the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958

Source: TH

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