Read Order: S Sridharan vs. MK Stalin & Ors

LE Staff

Chennai, August 10, 2021: The Madras High Court has declined a plea seeking direction to the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu to not chair any Advisory Committee formed u/s 7 of the Tamil Nadu Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Act, 1959, until he takes a pledge in front of a Hindu God in a nearby Hindu temple in the presence of two witnesses.

While refusing to appreciate the sentiment expressed in the petition, a Division Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice P.D. Audikesawalu observed that religion does not appear to teach narrow-mindedness or to require followers of another faith to be hurt or injured.

“Discord, disharmony and suspicion in the name of religion has to stop. This is a secular country and secularism implies tolerance for the other religion. This country also provides for freedom of expression to its citizens, which, in turn, implies lending an ear to the other point of view,” observed the Bench. 

The High Court also reiterated that even the Constitution permits the oath of office to be taken either in the name of God or in the name of the Constitution. 

The High Court, while imposing no costs on the petitioner, however barred him from filing any public interest litigation for a period of two years from date without obtaining permission from the relevant Bench in such regard.

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