‘SC has been wanting in its duties in Ram Temple case’

VHP working president says that despite the significance and public impact of the issue, it has not been decided yet
The pendency of appeals in the Ram Temple-Babri Masjid case has created uncertainty and kindled animosity between Hindus and Muslims, says the Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s working president, Alok Kumar , underlining the need for a law to enable the construction of a temple. The Supreme Court seems to be heading towards a judgment in the issue. Doesn’t this demand for a new law for the construction of a Ram Temple in Ayodhya seem somewhat pre-emptive?
Certainly not. I would be happy if what you said had been happening. In my understanding, all that has happened is that [then Chief Justice Dipak Misra] Misra fixed a date for the next hearing. I read in some papers that there might be a day-to-day hearing, but that is not so in the order of the SC. We do not know who would be the third judge, we don’t know at what periodicity they would hear the case. We have been in the court for 68 years; we have been in the SC for seven years. Matters that came up later, and in my understanding, not as significant in terms of public impact as this one, have been decided, even by the benches headed by Justice Misra. But this matter has been languishing. The pendency of the appeals creates an uncertainty and therefore, keeps kindling the fires between the two communities. In my view this is one of the most significant appeals that the SC should have taken up. I have said that the SC has been wanting in the performance of duties in the hearings of this case.
It is being said that the timing of the demand [for a new law] is designed to help the BJP in the 2019 polls. It may or may not affect the electoral outcome. We haven’t done it with an eye on the electoral battle.
How do you see recent judgments by the Supreme Court striking down Section 377 of the IPC on gay sex and 497 on adultery and the Sabarimala temple entry issue?
I feel that equally there were many issues, for instance polygamy, also pending before the courts that could have been decided. It’s a feeling I have, that whenever any government or a court wants to go down in history for its judgments, then it chooses the Hindu causes to beat. Sabarimala is one such cause.
But the courts have allowed women pilgrims to enter Haji Ali Dargah as well?
Yes, that may be so. We are not casting blame on the Supreme Court, we have faith in it. But, let’s leave this — now things just deteriorate into allegations and counter-allegations, when I raise this point.

What is your considered opinion then on the Sabarimala judgment?
The Supreme Court has interfered in things that were in the domain of saints, seers and society. Therefore, the agitation in Kerala is being led by women in whose favour this judgment was supposedly in.
What about the petitioners who went to court?
I read in [Justice] Indu Malhotra’s judgment that the petitioners had no locus because they did not allege that they had faith in the temple; they were outsiders. There was, and still is, no demand from a sizeable number of people who say that they are the devotees of the lord [Ayyappa] and would seek this right.
What about the striking down of Sections 377 and 497?
I feel laws are not static, times are not static. The morality of Victorian times is not relevant; therefore, I have no issues with the striking down of 377.
The judgment on 497, when you strike it down, then a vacuum is created and the Supreme Court has, in the past, after striking down a particular statute, said that Parliament should legislate. And till it does so, it mandates a certain course. They did not strike down this law, in my understanding, because they approved of such behaviour [adultery]. Their reasons had to do with equality of the sexes. Then they could have — till Parliament enacted a framework that bestowed equality and did not validate illegitimate relationships — said something to fill this vacuum.
How can law punish intimate relationships unless there is a pecuniary exchange?
You have to balance the two sides — the sanctity of marriage and the freedom to have relationships. As of today, any consenting relationship between two people was not a crime, unless one partner was somebody’s wife. But there is a sanctity to marriage, there is a family involved. Do we have some fear of the law, of repercussion, to prevent people from breaching these bounds?
Isn’t that the domain of social sanction rather than statute books?
When a social issue becomes a churning issue in society and there is a demand for reforms that is when, if the law intervenes, it helps. There should be a law that discourages adultery by any party.
The VHP has had an eventful year that saw the exit of Pravin Togadia; how did that come about?
Since I have been a part of the RSS from 1962, I have seen it from the inside. The RSS has had regular elections since its inception, but in none of these elections there had been a contest — we have learnt to do elections via unanimity. At some point of time, the VHP was the first case — there was a contest at the top. Do you hush it up? Do you put pressure on them to withdraw, do you fake an election? There is a constitution, it provides for elections. So we went through the electoral process; Mr Togadia had a candidate and he himself was the counting agent. He lost, signed the election result. He went straight to the pressmen waiting and resigned.
I would imagine if he hadn’t quit, what would have happened? He would have continued as one of our top leader, but he made a choice, and he does his own thing, we do ours.
Source : https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/sc-has-been-wanting-in-its-duties-in-ram-temple-case/article25222809.ece

About sree nivas

Check Also

Labour rights in India

The Constitution of India guarantees certain fundamental rights to all citizens, including the right to …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get Free Updates to Crack the Exam!
Subscribe to our Newsletter for free daily updates