The Uttarakhand High Court on Tuesday sought a reply from the state government on a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by BJP leader and Rajya Sabha member Subramanian Swamy, who has challenged the constitutional validity of The Uttarakhand Char Dham Devasthanam Management Act, 2019 and has prayed to strike down that Act.
The directions were issued by a bench comprising Chief Justice Ramesh Ranganathan and Justice Ramesh Chandra Khulbe.
The Act paves way for the state government to take over the management of around 50 temples in the state including the Char Dham shrines.
“The petitioner has also prayed that enforceability of the Act should be stopped forthwith. The state government will have to reply also on stay application,” said Manisha Bhandari, petitioner’s counsel.
Chief Standing Counsel Paresh Tripathi said that the court has given time of three weeks to the state government to file reply.
The state government’s move has faced protest from the opposition Congress as well as from priests and pandas of the Badrinath shrine, who had staged demonstrations in Dehradun and in other districts.
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