Karnataka News: The Karnataka High Court has said that giving ‘Azaan’ on loudspeakers does not violate the fundamental right of people of other religions. The court refused to order mosques to stop offering azaan over loudspeakers. However, the court directed the authorities to implement the ‘Noise Pollution Rules’ regarding loudspeakers and submit a compliance report. A division bench headed by Acting Chief Justice Alok Aradhe was hearing a PIL filed by Bengaluru resident Manjunath S. Halawar.
What did the High Court say in its ruling
In this petition given in the Karnataka High Court, it was said that “Azaan is an essential religious practice for Muslims, although the sound of Ajan disturbs those who follow other religions.” The court said in its order, “Articles 25 and 26 of the Indian Constitution embody the principle of tolerance which is a hallmark of Indian civilization. Article 25(1) of the Constitution grants the people the fundamental right to freely profess and propagate their religion.
“However, the above right is not an absolute right but is subject to restrictions under other provisions of Part III of the Indian Constitution in the matter of public order, morals, health,” the court said. The argument cannot be accepted that sound of azaan violates the fundamental right enjoyed by the petitioner and people of other religions.
Warning of strict action against violation of speaker rules
It is worth noting that with the Karnataka government issuing a circular on the use of loudspeakers in the wake of the Azan and Hanuman Chalisa controversy, the state’s home minister Araga Gyanendra had said that its implementation would be strictly monitored and any In case of violation also, action will be taken as per law. Gyanendra had said, “On the issue of loudspeakers, guidelines have been issued. The instructions are strictly followed, loudspeakers cannot be used between 10 pm and 6 am.
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