Mangaluru, Nov 29, 2014 : The Karnataka government on Friday approached the Supreme Court challenging the High Court order that allowed ’Made Snana’ performed by Malekudiya community, classified as a Scheduled Tribe, at Kukke Sri Subrahmanya temple in Dakshina Kannada district.
The Karnataka government on Friday approached the Supreme Court challenging the High Court order that allowed ‘Made Snana’ performed by Malekudiya community, classified as a Scheduled Tribe, at Kukke Sri Subrahmanya temple in Dakshina Kannada district.
It said that allowing the community to perform the rituals in accordance with its religious belief during ‘Shashti’ festival could lead to untoward incidents, including law and order problem.
The petition filed through advocate Joseph Aristotle sought a ban on the custom in its original form in which devotees roll over leftovers in the superstitious and unscientific belief that the ritual would cure skin disease and female infertility.
Acting on a petition by
Adivasi Budakattu Hitarakshana Vedike, the Karnataka HC had on November 19 ordered that the rituals, which were prevailing earlier, would continue to be performed by the devotees during ‘Shashti’ from November 19 to December 3 this year.
The court had not allowed any modification in the practice, saying the sentiments of the local people—attached to the temple and following the custom since time immemorial—cannot be brushed aside.
In its petition, the State government contended that the HC failed to appreciate that the practice, in its original form, also called ‘Pankti Bheda’ was clearly against public order, morality and health.
“Article 51 (A) and (H) of the Constitution casts fundamental duty on every citizen to develop scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform. The prayer to ban the practice is clearly in furtherance of the duty cast upon the citizens,” the petition said.
The government said that the HC’s division bench committed “grave error” by granting the interim order in view of pendency of a review petition against a single-bench order allowing the practice only in modified form.
It also pointed out that the right to practice one’s religion was subject to certain conditions. The ‘Made Snana’ was violative of fundamental rights of the citizens granted under Articles 13, 14, 17 and 21 of the Constitution.