Islamic invaders made their way into India, and relentless attacks on Kashi Vishwanath had started. Qutub-ud-din Aibak invaded Varanasi & destroyed Kashi Vishwanath & 1000+ temples. It was demolished again in the 15th century by Sikandar Lodhi or Hussain Sharqi.
Aurangzeb destroyed it in 1669 & built Gyanvapi Mosque in its place by using material from the destroyed temple. He destroyed the mandir out of sheer hatred for Hindu culture and built the Gyanvapi masjid in its place.
Gyan Vapi means ‘well of wisdom, the well is still present in the mosque today. It is believed that, during the invasion, the pandit of the temple took the Shiva Linga and jumped into the well to save it from Aurangzeb.
The temple was rebuilt by Ahilyabai Holkar in 1780 but the Gyanvapi Masjid remained adjacent to the temple due to threats by Nawab of Awadh.
The existence of this temple has been mentioned in the Puranas from the 3rd century. Chinese traveller Hieun Tsang mentioned the temple’s existence. There is Archeological evidence of the 9th century BC at the Rajghat excavations.
The remains of the erstwhile mandir can still be seen in the foundation, the columns, and the rear part of the mosque. Which establishes the claim more than evidence.
The current mandir which stands at Kashi is NOT the original site of worship.
The original mandir continues to be situated under the symbol of barbarity that Aurangzeb erected, and what he named the Gyanvapi mosque.
Now, the survey got completed as ordered by the court and they found a Shivling inside the well. The Shivling is 12 feet by 8 inches in diameter.
This case has been fought by the Father-Son Advocate duo, Shri Hari Shankar Jain and Shri Vishnu Shankar Jain.