May 13, 2015 | By Parmjeet Singh
Chandigarh: Acting on a petition moved by an Amritdhari Sikh from Ambala, the Punjab and Haryana High Court yesterday stayed orders of Session court of Ambala regarding removal of Kirpan in court room. It is notable that a Sessions judge of Ambala had refused to record witness of a Sikh who was wearing a ‘Kirpan’. The sessions judge had asked Dilawar Singh to remove his Kirpan in order to depose as a witness in a murder case.
Punjab and Haryana High Court judge Justice Augustine George Masih stayed the impugned order after the counsel for the State of Haryana sought four weeks to file reply to the contentions raised in the petition by Dilawar Singh of Kainth Majri village in Ambala district.
August 12 is fixed as next date of hearingin this matter.
“The impugned order dated April 18 is stayed till further orders”, Justice Augustine George Masih said.
According to the petitioner he was an important witness in a murder case registered at the Ambala City police station in December last year.
He stated that the trial of the case was pending before the sessions court in Ambala and when he went to the court of sessions judge Deepak Gupta for recording his statement on April 18, the judge objected to his ‘kirpan’ and directed him to remove the same.
The petitioner further stated that when he refused to remove the ‘kirpan’ citing religious freedom, the sessions judge refused to record his statement and directed him to appear in the court without the ‘kirpan’ .
The petitioner, who moved to the High Court through Advocate Navkiran Singh, has also sought directions from the HC to quash the April 18 orders passed by Ambala sessions judge.
“The order is violative of Article 25 of the Constitution and infringes the freedom of religion granted under the constitution” he argued.
In support of his claim, the petitioner has also cited various judgments of different courts in which rights of the Sikhs to carry ‘kirpan’ had been upheld as a fundamental right.
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