Facing flak from Kerala High Court over security restrictions imposed by the state administration in Sabarimala, the CPM-led Left Democratic Front government Monday approached the Supreme Court seeking transfer of a clutch of petitions pending before the High Court pertaining to the Sabarimala issue to the apex court.
The transfer plea said the petitions filed in the High Court were “attempts…to prevent” it “from implementing the judgment” of the apex court lifting age restrictions on entry of women to the hill shrine.
The High Court had on November 27 set up a three-member committee comprising two former judges and a sitting DGP-rank officer for “overall supervision” in Sabarimala. This was interpreted as a snub to the state government and police administration. Petitions challenging the prohibitory orders are still pending before the HC.
In its plea filed in the apex court Monday seeking transfer of all petitions pending in the HC, the state said they “raises the same/substantially the questions of law” as some other petitions pending in the Supreme Court seeking review of its September 28 ruling “namely the effect and implementation of the judgment…” The state said these questions were of “general public importance” and that it was “constitutionally bound to ensure that the law laid down by this honourable court is implemented”.
Justifying its decision to put in place tight security arrangements in Sabarimala, the plea referred to the developments in the shrine following the SC verdict. It said that “at least 5 women out of which two are working in the media… were physically obstructed and threatened with physical danger, when the tried to go to Sabarimala from Pampa”. It said that even the large police presence did not deter “the protesters, who claim to be worshippers” and “took the law into their hands…”