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Spiritual guru moves SC seeking release of live-in partner from her parents’ custody

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New Delhi, Jan 18, 2021-
A 42-year-old spiritual practitioner has moved the Supreme Court challenging a Kerala High Court order, which denied the release of his 21-year-old live-in partner from the custody of her parents.

The plea filed by spiritual practitioner Kailas Natarajan through advocate A. Karthik said: “The court has recorded the statement of the detenue wherein she had clearly stated that she was under illegal custody and has been subjected to physical violence and had expressed her intention to go with the petitioner, who is her spiritual live-in partner and acharya.”

The petitioner had filed a habeas corpus plea before the high court stating that his live-in partner was forcefully taken away by her parents on October 26 last year against her will.

A bench headed by Chief Justice S.A. Bobde and comprising Justices L. Nageswara Rao and Vineet Saran denied to pass any interim order.

“What is the evidence on record that you are a spiritual guru and you are her guru too.” the bench asked senior advocate Gopal Sankaranarayanan, representing the petitioner.

Sankaranarayanan argued that the high court had made an inquiry into his antecedents, which goes against the spirit of the verdict passed by the top court in the Hadiya case. The Chief Justice replied that the court is not discussing the Hadiya case here, reiterating that what is the proof that the petitioner is her spiritual guru.

“The detenue, a competent adult and a well-educated woman, is the spiritual live-in partner and yoga shishya of the petitioner. The detenue has been put in illegal confinement by her parents and her relatives (Respondents 3-5) since 26.10.2020,” said the plea.

The petitioner argued that the high court erred in calling for an enquiry into his antecedents and they can have no bearing on the outcome of a habeas corpus petition. “The petitioner is only a person who informs the court that a person is under illegal detention. Thereafter, it is the duty of the court along with the law enforcement agencies to find out whether there has been an illegal detention and to remedy it,” said the plea.

After a brief hearing, the top court let the high court proceed with the matter, and the bench will take it up next week. “We want to see what the high court does,” said the Chief Justice. (Agency)

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