No reason to apprehend COVID-19 protocol violation: Allahabad HC dismisses PIL against conduct of Bhoomi Pujan for Ram Mandir at Ayodhya
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No reason to apprehend COVID-19 protocol violation: Allahabad HC dismisses PIL against conduct of Bhoomi Pujan for Ram Mandir at Ayodhya

"We expect the organizers and the Government of Uttar Pradesh would ensure all the protocol applicable for social and physical distancing", the Court added.

Meera Emmanuel

The Allahabad High Court on Thursday dismissed a PIL moved by Mumbai-based activist Saket Gokhale against the conduct of 'Bhoomi Pujan', the ceremony for laying the foundation stone, proposed to be conducted for the Ram Mandir at Ayodhya (Saket Gokhale v. Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Tirthe Kshetra And Another).

However, the Bench of Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice Saumitra Dayal Singh added it expected the government authorities to take all necessary measures to guard against the spread of COVID-19 during the conduct of the Bhoomi Pujan.

"At present, we expect the organizers and the Government of Uttar Pradesh would ensure all the protocol applicable for social and physical distancing."
Allahabad High Court

Gokhlale had pointed out that about three hundred people had been invited for the event, scheduled to be conducted on August 5.

He had raised concern that such a crowd may cause a violation of the protocols prescribed by the Government of India and the Uttar Pradesh government to maintain social and physical distancing to combat the spread of COVID-19.

The Court, however, opined that the concerns raised in the petition were unfounded assumptions. Thus, the Bench proceeded to dismiss the plea. The order states,

"The entire petition for writ is based on assumptions and there is no foundation for apprehending violation of the prescribed protocol ... In view of whatever stated above, we do not find any just reason to interfere in the matter. The writ petition hence is dismissed."

Read the Order:

Saket Gokhale v. Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Tirthe Kshetra And Another - July 23 order.pdf
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