Remove portrait of judge who sentenced Bal Gangadhar Tilak

Tilak

A PIL has urged the Bombay High Corut to shift the portrait of a former judge, who had sentenced Lokmanya Tilak for sedition, from a Court to the newly inaugurated museum.

According to the PIL, Justice Dinshaw Davar had convicted Tilak in the Central Court on July 22, 1908, to six years' imprisonment for his articles in Kesari, a Marathi newspaper published by him.

The articles had referred to the killing of two European women at Muzzafferpore by terrorists.

Convicting Tilak on charges of sedition, Justice Davar had observed "the two articles are seething with sedition, they preach violence and only a diseased mind, a most perverted mind, that can think that the articles that you (Tilak) have written are legitimate articles to write in political agitation."

On the occasion of sesquicentennial celebrations of the Bombay High Court, a museum has been inaugurated in its premises. The petitioner, Nitin Deshpande, submitted that if the portrait of the judge is removed from Court number 40 and put up in the museum then he will withdraw the PIL.

The PIL contended that on the death anniversary of Tilak on August 1, all the judges pay respects by offering floral tributes to the leader. The portrait of Justice Davar should have been removed soon after the independence on August 15, 1947, as Tilak had fought the British rule by writing bold articles in Kesari.

"The petitioner submits that patriotism required the removal of portrait of Justice Davar with immediate effect as it has lowered dignity and patroitism of Lokmanya Tilak and Indian citizens in the country," the PIL said.

The PIL, which has been posted for hearing on August 21 before Justice Sharad Bobade and Justice Mridula Bhatkar, has prayed for removal of photographs, portraits and statues of all British judges from courts and lawns of the High Court to the newly inaugurated musuem.

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