State prohibiting execution of Court order in Church case: Kerala HC asks CRPF to handle matters

State prohibiting execution of Court order in Church case: Kerala HC asks CRPF to handle matters

Justice PB Suresh Kumar observed that the original order issues last year was intended for the Ernakulam district administration and not the state government

The Kerala High Court had ordered that the Central Reserve Police Force would take over the Kothamangalam church, if the Kerala government fails to implement the court order of handing over the church to orthodox faction before Jan 8 2021. The Court directed the Assistant Solicitor General of India to convey the court order to DIGP, CRPF Pallipuram for compliance.

Justice PB Suresh Kumar issued these directives based on the contempt of court petition filed by the Orthodox faction of the church against the District Collector for not complying with the court order. The Kerala High Court had earlier settled the dispute between two groups of the church in favour of the Orthodox faction.

The Court observed that Ernakulam District Collector’s conduct is willful in not implementing the issued court order a year ago. Besides, the Court noted that the meeting convened by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to solve the impasse did not discuss the implementation of the Court order.

On an earlier occasion, the LDF government in Kerala was very proactive in implementing the Supreme Court order allowing women to Sabarimala. However, when it came to Kothamangalam church, the CPM government has failed to implement the court order. Interestingly, the HC noted that its original order was intended for the district administration and not the state. The Court further observed that the state is “interdicting the administration of the order”.

“This Court is not unaware of the practical difficulties that may be experienced by the state machinery in implementing orders of the instant nature. However, practical difficulties have to give way for the implementation of the orders for upholding the majesty of the law,” the Court said. Justice Suresh Kumar observed that the Kerala government’s plans for mediation could not be an impediment to continue judicial proceedings.

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