“Saffron flag shall not be hoisted in and around Sri Parthasarathy Temple”: Kerala High Court

Debjit Mukherjee: A temple in Kerala’s Kollam district was accused of being used as a venue for political activities. On the other hand, the temple authorities wanted to hang the saffron flag in and around the temple premises. The local administration raised objection in fear of deterioration of the law and order situation. Finally the case came up in the Kerala High Court. The court upheld the order of the administration in that case.

Controversy over hanging saffron flag at Sree Parthasarathy temple in Kollam district. Hindutva organizations took to the streets demanding saffron flags to be hoisted in and around the temple premises. A section even approached the Kerala High Court in this regard. During the hearing, the government lawyer claimed that the petitioners are associated with a certain political party. Attempts are being made to make the temple a ‘field of political activity’. If saffron flag is allowed to be hoisted, it will disturb the peace and sanctity of the entire area including the temple.

The court accepted this argument of the government strategist. The request to hang the saffron flag in the temple premises and surrounding areas has been rejected. The judge said that hanging saffron flag has nothing to do with daily religious rituals.