Kerala HC dismisses plea for law to curb superstitious practices

Kerala High Court has dismissed a plea that sought directions for the state government to enact a law to curb superstitious practices like sorcery and black magic.

The petition was moved by an organisation called Kerala Yukthi Vadi Sanghom.

The plea came to be filed in light of an incident of human sacrifice in the state in which two women were killed and their bodies dismembered.

A division bench of Chief Justice S.V. Bhatti and Justice Basant Balaji dismissed the plea.

According to the petitioner, this was not the only such incident.

“Several cases of human sacrifices and other types of assaults in connection with the superstitious belief of black magic and witchcraft have come to light. For the purpose of God’s grace, financial gains, getting jobs, resolving family problems, the birth of children, and for several other desires, some people are practicing black magic and witchcraft of which people belong to the downtrodden, and the children and women are mostly the victims, ” the petition stated.

The petitioner-organisation claims to have approached both Central and state governments and submitted model bills for the statute, seeking an adequate enactment of a law to combat the issue.

However, since no action was seen to be taken, the plea was moved.

The plea also sought directions to the government to consider and make a decision on the recommendation of the Law Reforms Commission report of 2019, submitted by Justice K.T. Thomas with regard to the enactment of The Kerala Prevention of Eradication of Inhuman Evil Practices, Sorcery and Black Magic Bill, 2019.

The plea also pointed that there are many films, telefilms, and advertisements on television, YouTube and OTT platform that advertise superstitious practices that prompt people to indulge in such activities and hence appropriate actions must be taken.

The petitioner further prayed that advertisement of books with regard to black magic on internet sites be declared illegal.

In October last year, the state government had informed the Court that it is actively considering enacting an anti-superstition legislation. However, since no one appeared on behalf of petitioner when the case was posted for hearing, the Court decided to dismiss it for default.