Bengaluru: The high court ordered the initiation of suo motu petition to monitor state government’s action against illegally constructed religious structures -- temples, churches, mosques, gurudwaras and other religious structures -- in the state. The state government is required to take action against these structures that have been built in public places including parks and streets.

A division bench comprising chief justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka and justice HT Narendra Prasad issued the order to the registrar-general of the court. The bench was hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) petition related to a temple built illegally by a group of private individuals in the Police Colony of Rajajinagar when it issued the order. The area had been earmarked by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) to construct a park.

A Supreme Court order, that was passed in 2009, was brought to its notice, after which the court issued the directive. According to the order, in the case of union of India vs state of Gujarat, it had directed all state governments to review, case by case, all the existing religious structures constructed illegally in public places. The order had also asked the state governments to frame a policy to remove or relocate or regularise such illegal structures.

The Supreme Court had directed all the states to restrict such illegal construction in 2009.

The implementation of the issued directives was to be monitored by the high courts, as per a Supreme Court order in January.

The court has requested the state advocate general to provide assistance in the matter. It informed that the hearing of the plea would be held on July 2.