The Supreme Court on Tuesday stayed a direction issued by Kerala High Court against activist Rehana Fathima restricting her from using visual or electronic media to publish, share, transmit or disseminate any material or comments.
A Bench headed by Justice Rohinton Nariman also issued notice in appeal filed by Fathima in an order passed against her on November 23, 2020 by Kerala High Court.
The High Court had passed strictures against Fathima after she uploaded a video of a cookery show captioned “Gomatha Ularthu” on social media in which while narrating the recipe and preparation of a beef preperation, she was seen repeatedly referring to the meat used as “Gomatha.”
Use of the term “Gomatha” as a synonym for meat in a cookery show is likely to wound the religious feelings of lakhs of Hindus who worship cow as God, the Kerala High Court had observed.
A single-judge Bench of Justice Sunil Thomas held that this act of Fathima was in violation of a bail condition imposed on her by the High Court in 2018 in another case relating to publication of derogatory materials about Lord Ayyappa of Sabarimala.
In that case, the court had, while granting bail to Fathima, directed that she should not through print, electronic or visual media make, disseminate, share or forward any comment which has the propensity to affect religious sentiments of any community.
It said that there was sufficient reason to cancel the bail on this ground but refrained from resorting to such step. Instead, it ordered Fathima not to use visual or electronic media to publish, share, transmit or disseminate any material or comments.
The Court also ordered the removal of the video made by Fathima from social media titled “Gomatha Ularthu”.