SC Reviews Baba Ramdev's Plea to Consolidate Multiple FIRs Amid Controversy Over Allopathy Remarks

SC Reviews Baba Ramdev's Plea to Consolidate Multiple FIRs Amid Controversy Over Allopathy Remarks

Today, the Supreme Court entertained Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev's request to consolidate multiple FIRs lodged against him across various states regarding his purported statements asserting the inefficacy of Allopathy in treating COVID.

Acknowledging that the petition was initiated in 2021 and considering that a charge-sheet might have been submitted, the Court afforded the State of Bihar and Chhattisgarh an opportunity to update it on the current status of the FIRs and any filed chargesheets.

During the proceedings, the Court directed Senior Advocate Sidharth Dave, representing Ramdev, to involve the complainants in the ongoing case. Subsequently, the Court scheduled the next hearing for after the vacation period.

The case was brought before Justices MM Sundresh and SVN Bhatti for consideration.

During the hearing, when the counsel representing the Indian Medical Association pointed out that the complainants had not been included in the case, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta remarked, "They (IMA) are opposing Ayurveda, which I will be opposing seriously. They have no place here. Let it be between the complainant and the… We do not want strangers to come here."

Justice Sundresh intervened, informing the Union officer that the Indian Medical Association (IMA) simply sought clarification on the matter. "They just want to know the position, that is all," he remarked. Upon clarification from the counsel that only the IMA had been impleaded by the petitioner, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta humorously remarked to Dave, "Please delete it," referring to the inclusion of the IMA in the case.

The FIRs against Baba Ramdev were filed in the states of Bihar and Chhattisgarh following complaints by the Indian Medical Association (IMA). Additionally, the Patna and Raipur chapters of the IMA lodged complaints against Ramdev, alleging that his remarks could potentially prejudice COVID control efforts. They argued that misinformation spread by someone of Ramdev's influence might dissuade people from seeking appropriate treatment for the pandemic.

Furthermore, it's worth noting that in this petition, the Supreme Court had also instructed Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev to provide the video recordings and transcripts of his statements regarding the efficacy of Allopathy in treating COVID-19.

In the writ petition filed under Article 32, Ramdev has requested the consolidation of FIRs and their transfer to Delhi. Additionally, as interim relief, he has sought a halt to the investigation in the FIRs.

The FIRs specify alleged offences under Sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 269 (negligent act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace), and other provisions of the Disaster Management Act 2005.

Ramdev is also facing contempt proceedings initiated by the Supreme Court for publishing misleading medical advertisements, which is in breach of an undertaking given by Patanjali Ayurved to the Supreme Court.

Case Title: Swami Ram Dev v. Union Of India., W.P.(Crl.) No. 265/2021

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