MUMBAI: The Bombay high court on Monday told the Bihari Front, an organization that is presided over by former MP Sanjay Nirupam, that inviting a celebrity for the Chhath Puja at Juhu Beach was not a right.

The Bihari Front had moved the vacation court for a direction to cancel two conditions imposed by the November 5 order of the suburban collector while granting it permission to perform the November 17-18 puja.

One condition was that it should not invite a celebrity on stage and hold entertainment programmes, and the other was that it should not erect fences and create a dry zone.

The Bihari Front petition said it was its discretion to invite a personality and the collector could not dictate terms. It said the purpose of inviting the celebrity was merely to perform religious and cultural programmes.

“Why do you want to call celebrities?” asked Justice V L Achliya. Bihari Front advocates Anirudh Garge and Kashyap Bhalerao said celebrities had always attended the puja.

Justice Achliya said: “You are interested in performing puja or in celebrities? To call a celebrity is not a right to perform puja and observe rituals.”

Garge said the Bihari Front had organized the celebrations for 18 years and it was inviting only former Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar, daughter of Babu Jagjivan Ram. “She is not a celebrity,” he said.

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Source: TOI-MUM