The Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld Bombay High Court's decision to limit the height of human pyramids up to 20 feet and ban on participation on under 18 govindas.
The apex court gave the decision after hearing the plea of the Maharashtra government seeking remove the permanent ban on the participation of a youth below 18-years can participate in a 'Dahi-Handi' ritual and human pyramid formation could be above 20 feet, imposed by Bombay High Court.
The Bombay High Court had in 2014 ruled that children must not be allowed to participate in forming pyramid as it was dangerous. It had also ordered that not more than four human layers would be allowed in pyramid. But the apex court had stayed the order and allowed the organiser to celebrate Dahi Handi as per earlier rules for that year.
The top court, however, disposed of the case without examining the validity of HC order, giving an impression that SC's interim order was only for 2014 and the HC order was still valid. The state government approached the court requesting it to make its interim order final and binding for all years to come.
The Bombay HC has now ordered Maharashtra government to seek a clarification from Supreme Court over its decision on the matter. Admitting their plea for clarification on August 11, a bench of Justices A R Dave and L Nageswara Rao said that it will clarify on the issue on Wednesday as the counsel for the petitioner before the Bombay High Court was not present in the court.
Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Maharashtra government, said that it is an urgent matter as a petition seeking initiation of contempt proceedings has been filed before the high court which has asked the state government to seek clarification from the apex court on the issue.
He said that Janmashtami festival is approaching and 'Dahi-Handi' is one of the most popular parts of it.