Breaking: Karnataka HC Gives Green Singal For Ganesh Chaturthi Celebration At Hubaali-Dharwad Idgah Ground In Late Night Hearing
In a late-night hearing that was concluded at 11.30 pm, the Karnataka High Court refused interim relief to the Petitioner who challenged the permission granted by the Hubli Dharwad Municipal Corporation to Hindu organizations for holding Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations at Idgah ground in Hubbali-Dharwad.
The hearing before Justice Ashok S. Kinagi started at 10 am and continued for half an hour, following which the Court reserved its order which was pronounced after 11 pm.
The Writ Petition was listed in the morning before the Judge who deferred the hearing to await the result of the Bangalore Idaga matter.
Additional Advocate General of Karnataka Dhyan Chinappa appeared for the Municipal Corporation. Additional Solicitor General MB Nargund also appeared to oppose the petition.
The Petitioner's Counsel admitted that the Corporation is the owner of the land and has the right to do what it did. "It is their property but not at this time", he argued.
The AAG argued that Ganesh Chaturthi is a community festival where everyone is welcome to participate. He also said that the property is in exclusive possession of the Corporation.
As per the Respondents, a Suit was filed in the year 1974 for a declaration that Idgah is a public property by some individuals. The said suit was decreed declaring that the land is public property. The said decree was confirmed by the High Court in the year 1992 and thereafter by the Supreme Court.
They argued that the Idgah of Hubbali cannot be compared with the Idgah of Bangalore since there is no dispute on title.
The Court noted in its order that it is not in dispute that the property belongs to the Corporation and that it is the case even of the Petitioner that the land has been allotted on lease.
The Court referred to the Judgment of the High Court in the appeal against the decree in the Suit and held that "It is clear that Respondent No. 1 is the owner of the property and the Petitioner is the licensee permitted to use the property only on Bakrid and Ramzan festivals".
The Court also declined the argument of the Petitioner that the property is protected under the Places of Worship Act of 1991. The Court held that the said area has not been declared as a place of worship. "The Petitioner has not produced any document to show that the said place is a place of worship", it added.
The Court said that mere allegation about violation of the 1991 Act is not sufficient.
The Court held that since there is no dispute on title, unlike in the case of the Idgah of Bangalore, the Petitioner is not entitled to the benefit of the interim order passed by the Apex Court.
Accordingly, the Court rejected the prayer for interim relief of the Petitioner, paving way for the conduct of Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations at Idgah ground in Hubbali-Dharwad tomorrow.