Bombay High Court To Hindutva Leader
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Mumbai Sep 7 , Bombay high court on Thursday held that Building a Haj house is a “secular activity, not religious”,.
The observation was made by a division bench of Chief Justice DK Upadhayaya and Justice Arif Doctor during the hearing of a plea by Hindutva leader Milind Ekbote, associated with the Samast Hindu Aghadi seeking court nod to demolish a Haj house in Pune which is currently under construction
“You must differentiate between indulgence of the state in religious activity and secular activity. Construction of a Haj house is a secular activity. It is not a religious activity. Do not confuse yourself,” said the Chief Justice.
The bench also converted Ekbote’s petition into a public interest litigation (PIL) petition noting that he did not have any personal interest in the case.
Advocate Kapil Rathod, appearing for Ekbote, told the court that there had been a “change in land use” as the site was reserved for providing basic amenities to people in and around the Kondhwa area of Pune. He argued that the land use had been changed to construct the Haj house.
Pune Municipal Corporation’s advocate Abhijit Kulkarni said the land use was not changed. He said different communities get space for their cultural and community activities at the site. Kulkarni pointed out from Ekbote’s plea that two floors of the building had already been constructed.
The bench asked the State to file its reply to the PIL.

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