SC asks Maharashtra SDMA to take decision on Nanded Gurdwara Dussehra procession

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The Supreme Court Monday asked the Maharashtra State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) to decide on the representation by Nanded gurudwara management board seeking to hold Dusshera procession amid COVID-19 pandemic.

A bench headed by Justice L Nageswara Rao, which assembled during the Dusshera vacation of the apex court to hear the matter, said the decision will have to be taken on the basis of ground situation.

The bench, also comprising Justices Hemant Gupta and Ajay Rastogi, asked the gurudwara management to file a representation in this regard with the SDMA by Tuesday.

The gurudwara management board can move the Bombay High Court if it is not satisfied with the decision of the SDMA, it said.

The top court was hearing a plea by ‘Nanded Sikh Gurudwara Sachkhand Shri Hazur Abchalnagar Sahib Board’ seeking permission to carry out the customary procession on account of the 300-year old event —  ‘Dusshera, Takht Isnan, Deepmala and Gurta Gaddi’ –with certain conditions.

The plea has said that “Gurudwara Takhat Shri Hazur Abchalnagar is a pious place of world fame for being the last place of tenth Sikh Guru Shri Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj, where he granted holy seat of Guru to the Gurugranth Sahiv ji before going to Sachkhand”.

The Maharashtra government has told the apex court that allowing the Nanded gurudwara to hold Dusshera procession as per custom will not be a “practically feasible option” amid COVID-19 and the state has taken a conscious decision of not allowing religious functions to check the spread of the virus.

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