On Wednesday, the Supreme Court has sought for Centre’s response in a PIL which sought directions to change the name of ‘High Court of Bombay’ to ‘High Court of Maharashtra’.
A three-judge bench comprising Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justice AS Bopanna, and Justice Hrishikesh Roy, passed its order on a petition filed by Mr. V.P. Patil, former Principal Judge, Labour Court Mumbai. The petitioner avers that “the petition has been filed on behalf of a large number of people living and belonging to the State of Maharashtra who takes immense pride in their Marathi culture and heritage and are seeking renaming of “High Court of Bombay” to “High Court of Maharashtra” are seeking enforcement of their fundamental rights guaranteed under the Constitution of India.” Patil further asserts that the word “Maharashtra” denotes special significance in the life of a Maharashtrian and that its usage must also find expression in the name of the High Court as an expression of cultural and right to heritage as protected under Articles 19, 21, 29 of the Constitution of India.
Inter alia, the petition also reads that “The cultural assertion of a Maharashtrian remains in jeopardy by not renaming a public institution like the Hon’ble High Court of Bombay, this Hon’ble Court may uplift the socio, political and cultural rights of Maharashtrian as guaranteed by the Constitution of India.” The petitioner contended that having the same name of the High Court as the name of the State shall lessen the confusion that arises in the multiplicity of names.
The petitioner has further stated that on 19th July 2016, the High Court (Alteration of Names) Bill, 2016 was introduced in the Parliament of India changing of the names of ‘High Court of Judicature at Bombay as “High Court of Judicature at Mumbai’ and ‘High Court of Judicature at Mumbai” as “High Court of Judicature at Chennai’ respectively, however, the Bill lapsed in the Parliament due to a lack of consensus between the States.
The petitioner sought the apex court to direct respondents to take effective steps for implementation of Clause 4(1) of Maharashtra Adaptation Laws (State and Concurrent Subjects) Order, 1960 for conservation and preservation of the distinct culture, heritage, and traditions of the people of the State of Maharashtra and to change the name of the other High Courts in the Country as per the names of the States in which they are located.