“Don’t perform pooja or light lamps” Justice Oka says, Justice Gavai agrees

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Justice Oka said that he has always felt that our constitution has two important words in the Preamble, one is secular and second is democracy

Supreme Court Judge, Justice Abhay S Oka on Monday said that “Pooja” “Archana” should not be performed at premises of the judiciary. He was attending a “Bhoomi Poojan” ceremony organised in Pune, in light of the inauguration of a new district court building.

He pointed out that the thrust should be on core Constitutional principles instead and urged the legal fraternity to espouse Dr. BR Ambedkar’s mindset. 

Reportedly, he said, “We have to stop doing pooja Archana or lighting lamp kind of rituals during any events related to Judiciary. Instead we should keep the Preamble of the Constitution and bow down to it to start any event. We need to start this new thing to respect our constitution and it's value”.

According to a report in Economic Times, the judge attended the event with Justices BR Gavai and Prasanna B Varale, both Supreme Court judges, including Justice Devendra Kumar Upadhyay, the chief justice of Bombay High court and Guardian Justice of Pune, High Court Judge Justice Rvati Mohite Dere. 

Justice BR Gavai agreed with Justice Oka and said that his brother judge had indeed given a good suggestion. “Instead of performing pooja of a specific religion we should mark the foundation with a spade. We should inaugurate the event by watering the plants instead of the lamp lighting ceremony as suggested by our colleague Anil Killore. It will definitely send out a good message to society in terms of environment,” Justice Gavai pointed out.

Justice Gavai also said that nowadays, there is fear among judges for granting bail. “I think if we as judges have courageous and unbiased nature like Ramshastri Prabhune within us, why should we fear to grant bail? These days, the situation is like bail are not granted in the district court,” he said.