SC Stays HC Order Declaring 'Santhara' Ritual as Illegal

Published: 01st September 2015 04:21 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st September 2015 04:21 AM   |  A+A-

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday stayed the Rajasthan High Court order terming  illegal the religious practice of ‘Santhara’, a ritual of fasting until death prevalent among Jains.

A Bench comprising Chief Justice of India(CJI) H L Dattu and Justice Amitava Roy stayed the HC order and issued notices to the Centre, Rajasthan and others.

The court has asked the Central government, as well as the Rajasthan government to explain why they oppose the practice, and has given them four weeks to state their respective stands.

The Bench was hearing a batch of petitions filed by various religious bodies of Jain community members against the High Court order of August 10 on ‘Santhara’.Senior advocate Harish Salve appeared for the petitioners.

The pleas had sought a stay on the High Court judgment, claiming it was passed without appreciating the basic philosophy and tenets of the Jain religion.The High Court order holding that ‘Santhara’ violated Article 21 of the Constitution guaranteeing protection of life and personal liberty had come on a public interest litigation filed by Nikhil Soni.

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The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed the pleas of two telecom firms chargesheeted in the 2002 additional spectrum allocation case, challenging the special 2G court’s jurisdiction to deal with the matter. Accused firms Hutchison Max (P) Ltd and Sterling Cellular Ltd contended that the special court did not have the juridiction to hear their case.

Plea against Salman Declined

The Supreme Court on Monday refused to entertain a plea seeking cancellation of bail granted to Bollywood star Salman Khan by the Bombay High Court in the 2002 hit-and-run case. “We are sorry. The petitioner is permitted to withdraw the petition,” the Bench of Chief Justice H L Dattu and Justice Amitava Roy said.

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