“Do you think we have no other work except dealing with emotional issues?” the Supreme Court said while throwing out a petition seeking renaming of India as Bharat.
“Please do not come to this court with emotional issues. Help the poor through the PIL jurisdiction. If you want to call it Bharat, do so. Nobody is stopping you,” a bench of justices TS THakur and UU Lalit told the petitioner Niranjan Bhatwal, a Maharashtra-based social activist, on Friday.
The court snubbed his counsel for attempting to argue the matter on the ground that an earlier bench had issued notice to the Centre that had responded to the PIL.
“Petitions arising out of emotions and not fundamental rights are being filed in this court. You think we have no other work. India will be India and Bharat will be Bharat,” the bench said.
In April, a bench headed by then chief justice HL Dattu had sought responses of the Centre, states and Union Territories on Bhatwal’s PIL, stating that the Constituent Assembly had originally conceived and adopted Bharat as the official name.
The petitioner said he moved court after the government did not respond to his representation to rename India. Bhatwal waited for six months before approaching the top court seeking a mandamus – a judicial order -- to the government.