The Supreme Court on Monday junked a plea which sought to decalre spiritual leader Sri Sri Thakur Anukulchandra as 'Paramatma', and imposed Rs 1 lakh cost on the petitioner.
A bench comprising justices M.R. Shah and C.T. Ravikumar said that in India, everyone has the full right to follow their religion as India is a secular country.
The petitioner made Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP), Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB), National Christian Council, Ramakrishna Math, Gurdwara Bangla Sahib, Sri Palanpuri Sthanakvasi Jain Association, Buddhist Society of India etc. parties in the case.
The bench told the petitioner, Upendra Nath Dalai, who appeared in-person, "You can't say everyone has to follow only one religiona."
Terming the petition as 'publicity interest litigation', the bench added, "If you want, you can consider him as 'Paramatma. Why enforce it on others?"
The bench told the petitioner how it is possible that all citizens of the country should accept "your 'guruji'". It added that in India, everyone has the right to follow their religion.
Declining to entertain the plea, the bench said the petition is "thoroughly misconceived" which deserves to be dismissed with exemplary cost of Rs 1 lakh. The bench added that this cost has to be deposited with its registry within four weeks from today.
Concluding the hearing, the top court said, "Now people will think at least four times before filing such PILs."