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Notice to Govt on subsidy for Haj pilgrimage

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Dec 4 (UNI) The Delhi High Court today issued notice to the Union Government on a PIL seeking direction to the authorities to provide subsidy not only to the Haj pilgrims but also to everybody irrespective of their faiths on pilgrimage.

A division bench headed by Justice Swatantar Kumar directed the Central Government to file its reply to the allegations by January 4, the next date of hearing.

Counsel Sugriv Dubey and Namita Roy today submitted the copy of the special leave petition(SLP) filed in the Supreme Court and the judgement of the Allahabad High Court pronounced in the matter.

In the petition, petitioner Ashwini Kumar Gupta has sought direction to the Centre to disburse subsidy on pilgrimage to other religious communities like that of the Muslims going on Haj to Mecca in Saudi Arab.

Mr Dubey submitted that the government should spend the money of the tax payer on every religious communities.

Every year the government was spending about Rs 300 crore on more than 1.5 lakh people going on haj pilgrimage by taking them on special flights, providing accomodation and food, said the petition.

There are people of different faiths-- Hindus, Jains, Buddhists, Sikhs and Christians-- in India and providing subsidy to only one community violates the provisions of Articles 14, 15, 17 of the Indian Constitution, said the petition.

The subsidy should also be provided to Hindus for pilgrimage to Amarnath and Mansarovar, Sikhs to Nankana Saheb in Pakistan, Buddhists to Sarnath and Christians to Rome, said the petition.

UNI PAT BDP RS1833

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