NEW DELHI: A member of the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has approached the Supreme Court seeking to stay a show cause notice issued by the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) for moving the apex court against the ministry’s January 7, 2016 order allowing the bull taming sport like Jallikattu during Pongal.
AWBI member N G Jayasimha has filed a petition in the court, saying that the show cause notice dated March 27 issued by the ministry has a tendency to interfere with the administration of justice by applying pressure on AWBI which has invoked the jurisdiction of the SC under Article 32 of the Constitution of India.
“In light of these facts and circumstances, it is respectfully prayed before this Hon’ble Court to quash and set aside the show cause notice dated 28.3.2016 issued by the Respondent (MoEF) to the AWBI and to direct the Respondent to maintain status quo with regard to the constitution of the incumbent Board of the AWBI till the completion of its term,” he said in the petition.
The show cause notice sought to take action against the AWBI members.
The petitioner requested the court to pass an ad interim order staying the show cause notice so that no coercive or vindictive steps are taken against it during the pendency of the instant writ petition.
The show cause notice was issued to Maj Gen (retd) R M Kharb, Chairman, AWBI on March 28, nearly three months after the apex court stayed the Centre's notification lifting the ban. According to the ministry, the AWBI has no locus standi to file any matter before any court without seeking prior permission from this ministry.
It further says that the January 7 notification regarding the participation of bulls in Jallikattu and bullock-cart races was sent to the Board for compliance, in letter and spirit but the Board has been filing writ petitions in various courts seeking directions/relief against the Government of India and had specifically been directed to refrain from doing so.
The AWBI in its reply to notice has said that the ministry was in violation of the Supreme Court judgment while issuing an order allowing the sport.