The Supreme Court on Saturday stayed the Allahabad High Court's May 23 order, directing the head of the department of astrology at Lucknow University to ascertain whether an alleged rape victim was 'mangalik' by examining her horoscope.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, at the outset, submitted before bench comprising justices Sudhanshu Dhulia and Pankaj Mithal that the order is disturbing and it should be stayed.The apex court had taken the suo moto cognisance of the matter and heard the matter in a special sitting on Saturday at 3 p.m.
During the hearing, the bench noted that the order is totally out of context and the right to privacy is being disturbed. Justice Dhulia said: "We do not want to join facts on what astrology has to do with this... We are only concerned with subject matter linking to this."
The counsel, representing the complainant, submitted that the order was passed with the consent of the parties and pointed out that astrology is being taught at the university.The high court had passed the order while deciding the bail plea of a person accused of raping a woman on pretext of marriage.
The accused in the matter had contended that the marriage could not be solemnised because the woman was a mangalik.The apex court observed that while deciding a bail plea, court cannot enter into the realm of astrology which are private matters of an individual.
The apex court said: "We say nothing on merits. We stay the operation and effect of the order. The matter would be taken up by high court in next date of listing and shall be dealt on merits."In the high court, the counsel for the woman had argued that she is not mangalik.
The high court ordered the woman and the accused to submit their kundalis to the astrology department of the Lucknow University.The court directed the university to submit a report within three weeks.