SC junks plea for Taj Mahal probe: ‘Can’t reopen history after 400 years’

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday refused to entertain a PIL seeking re-writing of the history of Taj Mahal, saying, “Everything cannot be reopened after 400 years.” It also attempted to curb filing of frivolous PILs by imposing Rs 1 lakh cost on a petitioner seeking a declaration that Sri Sri Thakur Anukul Chandra be declared as the only God for all Indians.
A bench of Justices MR Shah and CT Ravikumar told petitioner UN Dalai that every citizen has the constitutional right to profess a religion of his choice. “India is a secular country and the petitioner can’t be permitted to plead that citizens of India may accept Sri Sri Thakur Anukul Chandra as ‘paramatma’,” it said.
‘Taj Mahal has been there for 400 yrs, let it be’
This is not a PIL but publicity interest litigation,” the bench said and dismissed it with a cost of Rs 1 lakh for wasting judicial time with frivolous plea.
A little later, advocate Barun Kumar Sinha argued on behalf of PIL petitioner Dr Sachchida Nand Pandey, who sought a direction to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to thoroughly examine the Taj Mahal and determine which structure pre-existed the Mughal-era monument. Sinha argued that the distorted picture projected in textbooks should be corrected after ASI gives its report on Taj Mahal. The bench said, “PILs are not meant for fishing inquiries. Taj Mahal has been there for 400 years and let it be there. You make a representation to the ASI and let them decide. Do not drag courts into everything. Everything cannot be reopened after 400 years. The courts have no expertise in archaeology.”

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