Gathering after the Diwali holiday on Monday, the Supreme Court will take the petition for the most debated issue of India in the next three days, when it will hear petitions relating to the dispute at the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the entry of women into the Sabarimala Kerala Temple and agreement to buy 36 Rafale jets from France.
To begin what may be a week of high tension, the court is expected to hear on Monday a petition from the director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Alok Verma, who has challenged the government's move to release him from power last month. during internal battles with deputy Rakesh Asthana, who had also been sent off. Both accused each other of bribery.
The Chief Vigilance Commission (CVC) is investigating allegations against Verma.
In the framework of October 26, the court gave CVC two weeks to complete the examination of Verma, who accused the government of disrupting CBI's independence and autonomy. He also said the investigation would be carried out under the supervision of a retired SC judge in "one exception".
People familiar with the matter said CVC had completed its investigation and would submit a report to the court on Monday.
The leader of the Congress party at Lok Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge, has also submitted a petition on this issue, saying he must be heard because he is a member of the committee of three members who elect the head of the CBI. The other two panel members are the Prime Minister and Chair of the Indian Judiciary (CJI). Kharge is part of the panel as the leader of the biggest opposition party in Parliament's Lower House.
Later on Tuesday, the three-member bench led by CJI Ranjan Gogoi is likely to hear a plea to challenge a court ruling that lifted the ban on the entry of women of all ages to the Sabarimala Kerala temple.
In a 4: 1 majority ruling on September 28, the court ruled that divinity and service cannot be subject to gender rigidity and stereotypes. He added that exceptions on the basis of biological and physiological features are unconstitutional and discriminatory because they reject women's rights to be treated as equals.
But traditionalists protested, clashed with police and even intimidated journalists to stop women between 10 years and 50 years from entering Sabarimala after the temple was opened. The protesters believe that the lead god, Mr. Ayyappa, is celibate.
Applicants who have challenged court orders say that faith cannot be judged by scientific or rational reason or logic. They said the ban was not based on physiology but was based on the celibate character of the gods.
On Wednesday, the court will take the Rafale agreement. On October 31, the court asked the Center to submit details of the price of the Rafale jet deal in a sealed cover within 10 days. The government believes that the information is so sensitive that it is not shared with Parliament.
The opposition has accused the government of paying more for aircraft and a lack of transparency in the agreement. The government has repeatedly rejected the accusation.
First Published: 12 November 2018 12:57 IST