Sharmili Mallick

Bhubaneswar: Ahead of the hearing on October 3rd Puri bandh violence incident in Supreme Court today, former solicitor general of India Gopal Subramanium who was appointed as the amicus curiae in the case by the apex court stepped down from his post.

In a letter to the Assistant Registrar of the SC, the senior advocate mentioned that ‘due to certain unavoidable personal circumstances’ he will not able to continue as the amicus curiae in the matter.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has accepted the application of Subramanium to step down as amicus curiae.

Sources said the new amicus curiae might be appointed by the last week of December as the next hearing of the apex court on reform measures carried out by the Puri Srimandir will be in second week of January 2019.

Taking serious note of allegations of exploitation of devotees by servitors, malpractices and mismanagement in the 12th century shrine, the Supreme Court, while hearing a petition on June 8 and July 5, had directed the temple administration to implement 12 proposals as a part of disciplinary reforms.

Though the servitors of temple came to consensus on nine proposals, they did not agree on three proposals including abolition of hereditary appointment of servitors, prohibition of collection of money for Annadan Atika by servitors and amendment of Shri Jagannath Temple Act, 1954.

The apex court later appointed Subramanium as amicus curiae to assist in the matter. He was scheduled to submit a report after considering the suggestions of all these stakeholders.