Supreme Court asks Ramdev to implead complainants in plea for stay of criminal probes [19.4.2024]

The Supreme Court on Friday asked yoga guru Ramdev to implead the complainants, who have lodged cases against him over his alleged remarks against the use of allopathic medicines during the Covid pandemic, as party in his plea seeking stay of criminal proceedings.

The Patna and Raipur chapters of the Indian Medical Association (IMA) have lodged complaints in 2021 alleging Ramdev's remarks were likely to cause prejudice to Covid control mechanism and may dissuade people from availing proper treatment.

A bench of Justices MM Sundresh and PB Varale, which was hearing Ramdev's plea seeking stay on criminal proceedings, said he needs to implead the complainants for securing relief in the matter.

The bench granted liberty to Ramdev to implead the complainants and posted the matter for hearing after the summer vacations of the apex court, which are starting from May 20.

The counsel appearing for the Bihar government said he needed time to file reply in the matter.

In his plea, Ramdev has impleaded the Centre, Bihar, Chhattisgarh and IMA as parties. The top court had issued notice to them on October 9, last year.

Earlier, senior advocate Siddharth Dave, appearing for Ramdev, had said the yoga guru had made a statement in 2021 that he does not believe in allopathic medicines to which some doctors took offence and lodged multiple cases against him.

As an interim relief, Ramdev has sought a stay on investigation on the criminal complaints.

The IMA has lodged complaints in Bihar and Chhattisgarh over Ramdev's remarks against the use of allopathic medicines during the pandemic.

The yoga guru has been booked under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code and the Disaster Management Act, 2005.

Ramdev, whose statements stirred a nationwide debate on Allopathy versus Ayurveda had, however, withdrawn them after receiving a letter from then Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, who had called his remarks "inappropriate".

The Delhi Medical Association (DMA), meanwhile, has sought permission to become a party to the case, alleging that Ramdev insulted Allopathy and "instigated" people to disregard vaccines and treatment protocols.

The DMA, having 15,000 doctors as members, has claimed that Ramdev's Patanjali earned over Rs 1,000 crore by selling Coronil kits which were not approved by the competent authority.

19 Apr 2024