Complaint filed in Sitamarhi court against Amit Shah

Sitamarhi: A complaint was filed on Monday in a court here against BJP president Amit Shah seeking registration of a case against him for sedition and other charges over his remarks in connection with the Supreme Court order on the Sabarimala issue.

The complaint was filed by social activist Thakur Chandan Singh in the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate Saroj Kumari here.

The court fixed November 6 for hearing the mat.

Shah’s comment made in the context of Sabarimala “has hurt the people’s sentiments and is an attack on federal democratic structure of the country,” the complaint alleged, citing newspapers report on Sunday regarding the BJP chief’s comments.

The complainant prayed for initiating case against Shah under various sections of IPC that included- 124A (sedition), 120B (criminal conspiracy) and 295 (injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class).

In his complaint, Singh alleged that Shah had publicly opposed the Supreme Court’s verdict on Sabarimala case as part of a “conspiracy” to reap political dividends in the 2019 general elections and had also hurt sentiments of women.

The apex court had allowed entry of women of all menstrual age into the Sabarimala temple in Kerala.

Approach SC on Sabarimala issue: HC to petitioner

The Kerala High Court on Thursday dismissed a Public Interest Litigation seeking barring of entry of women in the menstrual age group into the Lord Ayappa shrine at Sabarimala till additional facilities were set up for them, and said the petitioner can approach the Supreme Court.

Rejecting the plea, a bench comprising Chief Justice Hrishikesh Roy and A K Jayasankaran Nambiar observed that all constitutional institutions are bound to abide by the directions of the apex court.

On September 28, a five-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court, headed by then chief justice Dipak Misra, had lifted the centuries-old ban on the entry of women of menstrual age into the temple.

The high court said the petitioner P D Joseph can approach the Supreme Court over the matter.

After the ban was lifted, the shrine, which was opened for the monthly pooja on October 17, witnessed protests by a section of devotees, who prevented at least a dozen women in the 10-50 age group from entering the temple.

Though the government had considered deploying women police personnel, the plan was dropped following the protests.

The entry of menstruating women had been restricted in the hillock shrine as, according to tradition, the principal deity Lord Ayyappa is considered to be the ‘Naishtika Brahmachari’ or the perennial celibate.

SC to decide whether to refer Sabarimala issue to larger bench

SC to decide whether to refer Sabarimala issue to larger bench
SC to decide whether to refer Sabarimala issue to larger bench

The Supreme Court today reserved its verdict on whether to refer the matters pertaining to the ban on entry of women aged between 10 to 50 years at Kerala’s Sabrimala temple to its constitution bench.

A three-judge bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra said it would deliver a judgement regarding the “complexities of the issue” and may refer the matter to a larger bench for its consideration.

“We have heard the counsel appearing for the parties.

Judgement reserved on the question whether the matter should go to a larger bench or not,” the bench, also comprising Justices R Banumathi and Ashok Bhushan, said.

The bench asked the parties, including the petitioners, respondents and the amicus curiae, to furnish within a week their written submissions and questions which may be referred to a five-judge constitution bench.

“Counsel for the parties shall file written submissions/ questions, which should fall under the constitutional framework, that is likely to be referred to the larger bench,” the apex court said.

The management of the Sabarimala temple, located on a hilltop in the Western Ghats of Pathanamthitta district, had earlier told the apex court that the ban on entry of women aged between 10 and 50 years was because they cannot maintain “purity” on account of menstruation.

The court is hearing a plea challenging the practice of banning entry of such women in the temple.

During the hearing today, the bench observed: “Regarding the complexity of the issue, we will deliver a judgement. We can refer the matter to a constitution bench. It (judgement) will create a background for the constitution bench. You can give us the issue which are to be dwelt upon”.

Senior advocate K K Venugopal, representing the Travancore Devaswom Board which manages the hill-top shrine, argued that the alleged discrimination was not between men and women but between women and women.

He said the matter involves interpretation of Articles of the Constitution and argued that, in this matter, Article 26 of the Constitution would prevail over Article 25.

Article 26 relates to the freedom to manage religious affairs subject to public order, morality and health and states that every religious denomination or any section shall have the right to manage its own affairs in matters of religion, while Article 25 speaks of freedom of conscience and free profession, practice and propagation of religion.

( Source – PTI )