Probably the only country in the world that does this, many devout Indians are said to have intimate relationships with their gods and goddesses, and with that in mind the Indian judicial system regards deities as legal beings, which means that there have been instances where the deities have been hauled into court.
As in the case of Bihar that this month served a summons to Lord Hanuman the monkey god, for encroaching on government land. This came after a government department filed a complaint against a roadside Hanuman Temple, saying it obstructed traffic. Officials served the summons by sticking the papers on the idol.
Embarrassed government officials later said it was a clerical error, as the papers were meant for the temple management and not for the God, then they removed the summons from the face of Hanuman who coincidentally is often depicted with a red face.
In another similar incident a lawyer took Hinduism’s most popular God Lord Ram to court for being unfair to his wife Sita. The magistrate threw the case out of court saying it was not practical and Mr Singh’s colleagues accused him of seeking publicity. In a tit for tat move one of his colleagues sued Singh for defamation. Singh was unfazed when he told the media he would file an appeal because he believes Indians have to admit Ram mistreated Sita.
In December 2007, the Gods Ram and Hanuman were ‘personally’ summoned to court to help resolve a property dispute in Jharkhand where two temples of Ram and his lieutenant Hanuman stood.
In 2010 the Mumbai high court ruled that Gods cannot play the stock market and rejected a petition from a religious trust that wanted to open trading accounts in the names of five gods including Ganesha the God with the elephant head. Wisdom prevailed when the judges said to expect the deities to trade in shares on the stock market requires certain skills and to expect the deities to participate was not proper, as gods and goddesses are meant to be worshiped and not dragged into commercial activities such as share trading.
India never fails to amaze the world !