Supreme Court on Thursday junked a petition filed by a retired judicial officer to rename Bombay high court as Maharashtra high court claiming that the plea squarely felt within the domain of Parliament.
Incidentally, the plea was entertained by a three-judge bench headed by former Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde on June 3, 2020 and was dismissed 29 months later with the bench of justices Aniruddha Bose and Vikram Nath finding that the petition was not maintainable at all.
The bench said, “How can we entertain this prayer. You have to leave it to the lawmakers to decide. What is the fundamental right that has been prejudiced for which a matter has been brought by you under Article 32.”
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Advocate Qurratulain who appeared for the retired judge VP Patil said the petition related to freedom of speech and expression also includes expression of cultural identity.
The petitioner had stated that the word “Maharashtra” has a special significance for a person belonging to that state as every Maharashtrian takes pride in associating with dignity associated with the term “Maratha”.
The petition further asserted that the cultural assertion of Maharashtra cannot be fulfilled unless public institutions, including the High Court, are not renamed after the state.
Qurratulain told the bench that pursuant to the notice, the Centre had filed affidavit and the same should be considered.
The Centre told the Court that such a petition cannot be entertained as it is a matter falling within the exclusive domain of Parliament.
The petitioner sought permission to move the petition as a representation to the Centre but the Court refused to pass any order claiming that the competent authority is Parliament to which no direction can be issued to consider any representation.