The Karnataka government on Wednesday informed the Karnataka High Court that it will not stop any individual from celebrating Tipu Jayanti on November 10. However, the government added that it won't celebrate the day. The court ordered the government to reconsider its decision.
The court refused to grant a stay on the government order and observed that the state government must consider its decision taken on July 30. "The findings recorded and the government order of celebrating these Jayantis to uphold the values of secularism in the Constitution - these considerations may not have been made by the government as a decision was taken in a day," the court observed.
"It should not look like the decision was taken arbitrarily... By way of interim order we direct the state government to reconsider its decision taken on July 30 and take appropriate decision in the light of observations made in this order," the High Court observed.
The High Court further directed the state government to take appropriate decision in two months and get back by the third week of January 2020. The BJP government in Karnataka had on July 30 decided not to celebrate Tipu Jayanti in 2019. An order in this regard was issued to the Kannada and Culture Department on a decision taken by Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa at a state cabinet meeting.
In 2018, a political controversy had erupted, over the celebration of the birth anniversary of Tipu Sultan, between the then ruling Congress government and the BJP. The Congress government led by former chief minister Siddaramaiah was of the view that the 18th-century ruler of Mysore was a "freedom fighter" as he killed in the fourth Anglo-Mysore war and thus his birth anniversary should be celebrated while the BJP claimed that the ruler was against Kannada language and an "anti-Hindu".