Dahi handi an adventure sport? Bombay HC questions state government’s categorisation
Mumbai city news: A government resolution issued on August 12 said the formation of human pyramids by govindas to break dahi handis will be treated as an adventure sportmumbai Updated: Jul 18, 2017 08:35 IST
The Bombay high court on Monday questioned the categorisation of dahi handi as an ‘adventurous sport’ and directed the state government to explain why it had been tagged as one.
The HC also asked if its order — of capping the height of dahi handis — human pyramids formed to celebrate Krishna Janmashtami — and restricting participation in the cultural event to adults only — can be flouted under that garb. A government resolution issued by the state sports department on August 12 said the formation of human pyramids by govindas to break dahi handis will now be treated as an adventure sport. “What do you mean by ‘adventure sport’”, the bench of justice RM Savant and justice Sadhana Jadhav asked. “Does it mean that a five-year-old can participate in dahi handi and the high court order can be flouted openly,” it said.
The bench was hearing a contempt petition filed by Swati Patil complaining about the breach of the HC order passed on her PIL raising concern about the casualties during dahi handi celebrations.
The PIL contended the casualties and injuries are primarily because of the unreasonable height of dahi handis.
Acting on her PIL, the high court had in August 2014 ruled that children must not be allowed to participate in dahi handi celebrations because of the inherent dangers involved in the event. Taking into consideration the ever-increasing height of dahi handis, especially the ones organised by political leaders in Mumbai and Thane, the court also limited the pyramid to four tiers or about 20 feet.
The state government moved the Supreme Court challenging the high court order. The Apex Court has ordered that no person below 18 years of age can take part in dahi handis. It also capped the height of such pyramids at 20 feet.