SC directs cops to ensure security for Sabarimala case petitioner

SC directs cops to ensure security  for Sabarimala case petitioner

The Supreme Court on Monday directed the Delhi Police commissioner to ensure that no harm is caused to an advocate who is also president of a lawyers’ forum which has filed a PIL seeking women’s entry into the Sabarimala temple.

The association filed a PIL seeking entry of women between 10 to 50 years of age into the Sabarimala temple. Indian Young Lawyers' Association (IYLA) president and advocate Naushad Ahmed Khan claimed that he received 500 threat calls following the admission of the PIL by the apex court.

Special hearing

Conducting a special hearing in view of “gravity” of the matter, the court directed the Delhi Police to continue providing security to Khan.

Holding that hearing in a PIL in a court of law is not dependent on any person, a three-judge bench presided over by Justice Dipak Misra said: “Access to justice cannot be dented by any authority or any person. It can only be controlled by a court of law within the parameters of law. Individual whim or fancy or perception has no room.”

After noting that an FIR has already been filed by the police in the matter, the court directed the police commissioner to file a response about the steps taken to ensure security to Khan. “We direct the commissioner of police to see that attempts of this nature are crippled in the beginning,” the court said, as Khan submitted that he has already been provided security.

Khan also submitted that he personally had nothing to do with the PIL which was filed by Bhakti Pasrija, general secretary of the IYLA.

Senior advocates K K Venugopal and V Giri, appearing for the Travancore Devaswom Board and Kerala government respectively, condemned the threats given to the litigant, calling it as “absolutely obnoxious”.

The court had on January 11 questioned the Sabarimala temple authorities as to why women can't be allowed entry into the Kerala's shrine in violation of their Constitutional rights.

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