Ram Lalla Pran Pratishtha events at private places | No police permission required in T.N., Madras High Court told

Justice N. Anand Venkatesh held a special sitting at 9.30 a.m. on January 22, and recorded the submission of the T.N. police that it is enough if the organisers inform the police about any events being held at private temples or mandapams so that bandobust could be provided

January 22, 2024 11:21 am | Updated 01:48 pm IST - CHENNAI

A view of the Madras High Court. File photograph

A view of the Madras High Court. File photograph

The Madras High Court held a special sitting at around 9:30 am, on Monday, January 22, 2024, an hour before the beginning of its working hours, and recorded the submission of the Tamil Nadu police that its permission is not required to play bhajans, offer Annadhanam or live stream of Ram Lalla Pran Pratishtha at private temples, mandapams or other such places.

Also Read:Ram temple consecration LIVE | Ayodhya in grip of religious fervour, ‘Pran Pratishtha’ ceremony to start at 12.20 p.m.

Justice N. Anand Venkatesh heard an urgent writ petition in his chambers and recorded the submission of Additional Public Prosecutor (APP) A. Damodharan that the organisers just need to inform the police about the event so that an adequate force could be deployed for crowd control measures. The police would impose restrictions only in sensitive places to maintain law and order, the judge was told.

Shri Ram Lalla idol unveiled; PM Narendra Modi offers prayers at Ram Temple | Video Credit: Special Arrangement

The judge was also told that the permission of the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) Department must be obtained only for temples that fall under its control. “The above stand taken by the State Government and the police makes it quite clear that conducting the function considering the auspicious occasion, singing Bhajans/uttering Rama Nama/Annadhanams are not per se prohibited or restricted,” the judge wrote.

Do all of this in a responsible manner: judge

“It must be borne in mind that all this will be done in a responsible and pious manner today without giving rise to any law and order problem. No misinformation or wrong information must be permitted to be spread and this will be kept in mind by all parties concerned. Ultimately, everyone concerned must keep in mind that Bhakti towards God is only for peace and happiness and not to disturb the equilibrium prevailing in the society,” he added.

The writ petition was filed by L. Ganapathy, president of Viveka Hindu Movement at Tiruninravur in Chennai challenging an order passed by the Avadi Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) on January 21, 2024 rejecting permission for Bhajans and Annadhanam at a private marriage hall in Pattabiram. Senior Counsel S. Ravi and G. Karthikeyan argued the case on behalf of the petitioners.

Chief Justice Sanjay V. Gangapurwala had granted permission for the special hearing at 9.30 a.m. after accepting a request made by the petitioner’s counsel on record, Abhinav Parthasarathy and Tarun Rao Kallakuru, since the Ram Temple consecration in Ayodhya was scheduled to begin by noon.

When the hearing began before Justice Venkatesh, the portfolio judge for criminal writ petitions, the APP said, the Avadi ACP had passed another order on January 21, granting permission for the Bhajan and Annadhanam. However, since many functions were to be held across the State in connection with the temple consecration, the judge wanted to know the stand of the State government as well as that of the police.

Accordingly, the APP clarified that it was sufficient to inform the police about the events in private places and that there was no necessity to obtain permission as such.

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