New Delhi: The Supreme Court has dismissed a plea questioning the custody of the golden throne and the golden howdah that is housed in the Mysuru Palace and are used during Dusshera by the royal family.
A bench headed by Chief Justice T. S. Thakur asked the petitioner P. V. Nanjaraja Urs to approach the Karnataka High Court where the Mysore Palace (Acquisition and Transfer) Act, 1998, is under challenge.
The bench also comprising justices A. M. Khanwilkar and D. Y. Chandrachud asked the petitioner to withdraw the petition and granted liberty to him to approach the high court.
The court ordered the plea to be dismissed as withdrawn.
The petition filed through advocate Vishnu Shanker Jain had questioned the honorarium or the royalty paid to Pramoda Devi Wadiyar, wife of then prince of Mysore late Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar, by the state government every year during Dusshera.
The government pays royalty requesting the royal family to give the throne and the howdah for Dusshera celebrations.
Urs in his petition contended that the Mysore Palace (Acquisition and Transfer) Act 1998 was in force and the government has taken possession and custody of the Mysuru Palace in 1978, but was still paying royalty.
The Department of Kannada and Culture has paid the scion of Mysuru royal family Rs 20 lakh in 2012, Rs 25 lakh in 2013 and Rs 30 lakh each in 2014 and 2015.The bench dismissed the petition.
“The State Government/respondents are giving royalty every year during ‘Dasara’ festival to the 6th respondent for Golden Throne (Rathnasimhasana) and Golden Howda (Ambari) is very much illegal, arbitrary, unjustified, against to the principles of natural justice and against the 26th amendment to the Constitution,” it said.
The plea had said that the payment of royalty is illegal as the privy purse and the special status which was granted to the royal families has been withdrawn by the Union of India vide 26th Amendment Act, 1971.