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Supreme Court in India lifts ban on Santhara death fast prevalent among Jains


New Delhi: The Supreme Court in India has suspended a ban order of the Rajasthan high court over the controversial Jain ritual of fasting unto death which is popularly known by the name Santhara Earlier this month, the high court had ruled that the

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voluntary religious practice of Santhara was a kind of suicide and, therefore, illegal also. People belong to Jainism had protested against the order, saying that even though suicide was sin, Santhara was a religious ritual based act. The top court has said that it would take up the matter for consideration. Legal experts said that they are expected the case to take several years to come to a conclusion. Jainism is one of the most ancient religions in the world, where Jain monks lead a life of extreme self-discipline and desertion. Santhara is a controversial practice in which the believers of Jainism give up food and water as a means to get ready for death. This practice is also known as sallekhana. According to certain human rights activists, the ritual Santhara is a social evil and should be considered as suicide. In its order, the Rajasthan high court has pointed out that Santhara is more or less similar to suicide and hence it should be considered as a criminal offense.   Video on Santhara issue in Rajasthan, India