Plea to remove seer: SC orders status quo

Plea to remove seer: SC orders status quo on HC proceedings


The Supreme Court on Monday directed status quo on the Karnataka High Court’s order to the Chief Secretary to consider a plea to remove Raghaveshwara Bharathi Swami as head of Ramachnadrapura Math and regulate this as well as other religious institutions due to “rampant abuse of power.”

A bench of Justices U U Lalit and Vineet Saran issued notice to Edurkala Ishwara Bhat, and others on whose PIL, the High Court had passed an interim order allowing the petitioners to make a representation to the Chief Secretary.

The top court passed its order of status quo after hearing senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi and advocates Shailesh Madiyal and Aruna Shyam on behalf of Raghaveshwara Bharathi Swami, who questioned the High Court’s order of June 27, 2019.

On a plea by Swami, the HC had declined to recall its interim order of April 28, 2016 to the Chief Secretary.

In the writ petition, the petitioners asked the High Court to direct the Karnataka government to exercise its executive power to regulate Bengaluru’s Ramachnadrapura Math and other institutions in the state, pending enactment of a regulatory statute.

They also sought a direction to remove Raghaveshwara Bharathi Swami from the office of ‘Mathadipathi’ or head of the peetha and and direct his prosecution for alleged “misuse and abuse of the office”.

They had cited several instances of moral turpitude including alleged rape cases to contend that he had brought irreversible damage to ‘sanatana dharma’.