Astrology is an ancient "science" and it cannot be banned, the Union Government has said in an affidavit filed in the Bombay High Court here.
The High Court is currently hearing a PIL, which seeks ban on practise of astrology, vastu-shastra etc. It also seeks action against advertisements of astrologers, under Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954.
However, in an affidavit filed in reply to the PIL, Dr R Ramkrishna, Deputy Drugs Controller, government of India, says that "ban on astrology and related sciences sought by the petitioner, which is a time-tested science more than 4000 years old, is totally misconceived and unjustifiable".
The affidavit relies on Supreme Court's judgement which had held that introduction of a course in astrology did not militate against the concept of secularism enshrined in the Constitution.
Further, the affidavit states, that Drugs and Magic Remedies Act does not cover the astrology and related disciplines.
The Act can be used only against misleading advertisements relating to drugs and magic remedies, such as an advertisement of a drug assuring prevention of pregnancy, or improvement of sexual power, etc without any scientific basis, affidavit says.
Petitioner Bhagwanji Rayani has made several well-known practitioners of astrology and vastu-shastra a party to the petition.
It includes famous astrologer Bejan Daruwala too.
However, High Court adjourned the hearing today till June, as several of them have not yet filed their replies.
(Courtsy : The Financial Express)