“Bal Sanyasa” is legal ; No Constitutional Bar against minor becoming swami :Karnataka High Court

Karnataka High Court on Wednesday upheld the legality of ‘Bal Sanyasa’ held that there is no constitutional bar on taking sanyasa by minor .

The bench headed by Acting chief justice Satish Chandra delivered judgement . Court dismissed the writ challenging legality of ‘bal sanyasi Aniruddha Sarlaathaaya now appointed as Peethadipati of Shiror math in Udupi . Appointed at young age of 16 years .

Court propounded that other religions like Buddhism have a tradition of taking sanyas at tender age , after studying the religious texts court came to conclusion that no constitutional bar on taking sanyas , court said that this practice has been going on for 800 years as an essential religious practice not opposed to morality , public order or any fundamental right . Court has not a magical wand to deal with theological issues , it will not unnecessarily interfere in religious affairs .

Petitioner’s advocate raised the argument that this practice is depriving children of material benefits and force them to ‘material abandonment’ which is fundamental right covered under Article 21 .

Advocate SS Naganand amicus curiae , put forth the point that it will be wrong to generalise the case and every case will have its factual context .

In case of SHIOR KATTE MUTT , AIR 1954

Supreme court decided that minor is not for all purposes . Age of majority of 18 years is only for entering into contract . Religion, religious rites and usages are kept out of it .

And also this is only a coincidence that boy became pethadipati is of tender age , the only requirement is that he should be celibate , deeksha is given after taking consent of his father and mother and there is no forceful imposition .

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