Delhi High Court
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The Delhi High Court on Thursday reserved its verdict on a PIL filed against allowing Sikhs to carry kirpans while traveling on civilian flights in India. This petition has been filed by Harsh Vibhor Singhal. A bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramaniam Prasad reserved its decision after hearing the arguments of all the parties.
The petitioner’s lawyer has challenged the notification dated 4 March 2022 by the Centre. It states that Sikh passengers have extraordinary regulatory clearance to carry a saber with a blade length of more than 6 inches and an overall length of more than 9 inches on any civil flight operating on all domestic routes in India. The bench said that this is the policy of the Government of India and how can we interfere in such a policy decision? The bench told the petitioner that your mind cannot be the mind of the government. So when the government has applied its mind and come up with a policy then we should not interfere.
The court also declined to entertain petitions by some parties, including MP Simranjit Singh Mann, seeking to be impleaded in the matter as their applications were not on record. The petitioner argued that he was not questioning the right to profess and practice any religion under Article 25 of the Constitution, but only wanted constitution of a committee of stakeholders to examine the issue. The petitioner also submitted that as per the counter affidavit filed by the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security, it has not formulated the policy but what the government has said is being followed.