Bengaluru: The Karnataka High Court on Tuesday asked the state government to reconsider its decision to ban the official celebrations of Tipu Jayanti in the state. The court, however, has not revoked the ban on the government celebrating ruler Tipu Sultan's birth anniversary on November 10.
The court told the government that private organisations wanting to celebrate Tipu Jayanti must be allowed.
"In fact, all security must be provided to them to do so," it observed. "The state government will take all precautions to see that celebrations, if any, will be done."
The court was hearing a Public Interest Litigation, which termed the BS Yediyurappa government's ban on Tipu Jayanti celebrations as arbitrary. But the Advocate General told court that there was no element of public interest in this case.
The PIL petitioners had argued if birth anniversaries of other leaders was being celebrated, why was Tipu Jayanti being singled out.
A petition against celebrating Tipu Jayanti was filed by Madikeri MLA Appachu Ranjan on July 29. A day later, the chief minister ordered that it should not be celebrated.
"The decision to celebrate birth anniversaries of other personalities has not been interfered with, as they belong to various communities," the petitioner told the court, listing out personalities such as Kanakadasa and Valmiki among those whose birthdays are observed as a state function.
"By way of interim order, we direct the state government to reconsider it's decision taken on July 30, and take appropriate decision in the light of observations made in this order, in two months from today. The Government can file objections, give details of other Jayanti celebrations of personalities at State level, and orders, if any, of celebration of these festivals," the division bench led by Chief Justice Abhay Sreeniwas Oka.
Meanwhile, Congress MLA from T Narasipura Tanvir Sait approached the District collector of Mysuru to seek permission to conduct a programme celebrating Tipu Jayanti at the Bannimantapa Kavayatu Grounds in Mysore. Sait threatened to stage a protest if the District Collector Abhiram Shankar didn't give his permission by 12pm on Thursday.