Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Kerala high court told not to be superstitious

This is one controversy Kerala and its High Court could have done without. The state that prides itself on being the most literate in the country, apparently has as much superstition as the rest of the country.

In a pointer to its existence in the state, the Supreme Court has asked the Kerala High Court not to encourage superstition, taking note of the fact that the High Court building in Kochi has not assigned No 13 to any of its courtrooms.

A petitioner, Chandramohan, has alleged that it was due to superstitious beliefs that there was no courtroom No 13 in the building and that the room after No 12 was No 14.

In Kerala and many parts of India, No 13 is considered inauspicious. The petitioner has argued this may have played on the minds of the court authorities as well.

The new building of the Kerala High Court in Kochi was inaugurated in February this year.

Admitting the petition, the Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Y.K. Sabharwal has asked the High Court not to encourage superstition. It is expected that it would now set right the anomaly.

It is pointed out that there was once a courtroom No 13 in the old High Court when it functioned at the Ram Mohan Palace, and that it was later changed to No 12-A.


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