Three similar petitions pending there; plea dismissed as withdrawn

The Supreme Court has declined to entertain a writ petition for a direction to the Travancore Devaswom Board to stop lighting the Makara Jyothi at Ponnambalamedu on Makaravilakku day in January every year, as it is not a miracle but man-made fire.

A Bench of Chief Justice S.H. Kapadia and Justices K.S. Radhakrishnan and Justice Swatanter Kumar on Friday dismissed as withdrawn the petition filed by Sanal Edamaruku, resource person of the National Science Centre, a constituent unit of the National Council of Science Museums under the Union Culture Ministry. CJI told counsel Deepak Prakash that he should approach the Kerala High Court as three similar petitions were already pending there.

Probe into fire

The petitioner, while also seeking a probe into the Makara Jyothi fire, said: “As per the popular belief, a light is seen glowing in the distant hill on Ponambalamedu. The said lamp flickers three times before disappearing. The sighting of the lamp/light creates a flutter among the unassuming devotees who have been tutored to believe that the light is a divine one and miracle of god. According to the Devaswom Board, which manages the Sabarimala temple, a light appears on the hill which is a miracle and the pilgrims turn up in masses to view this unnatural phenomenon.”

Artificial

However, it came to the notice of the petitioner, to his shock and dismay, that the Makara Jyothi “is nothing but a fire artificially created by employees of the Kerala State Electricity Board and the police in connivance with the Devasom Board, by lighting camphor in a huge vessel and then covering it with blankets to create a blinking effect.”

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