On Thursday, the Supreme Court for the first time heard the case of a Parsi woman, Goolrukh Gupta, who has married outside the community, and is thus barred from entering fire temples, and the Towers of Silence, where the dead of the community are taken.
Ms. Gupta’s lawyer Shiraz Patodia, who is also her sister, said that the SC has asked the trustees of the Valsad Parsi Panchayat to submit a reply on whether they agree that Parsi women married outside the faith should get this right. If they disagree, the hearing of the case will begin from Thursday. “All I can say is that we are very hopeful from the SC that something positive will work out,” Ms. Patodia told The Hindu.
Ms. Gupta, who hails from Valsad, Gujarat, had seen a Parsi friend, married outside the community, not allowed to attend her parents’ funerary rituals. Ms. Gupta, who too has married outside the community, asked to be allowed to enter the Valsad fire temple and doongerwadi (the sitewhere death rituals are performed) when her parents — both now 84 — die. Her request was declined. She then petitioned the Gujarat High Court. In 2008, the HC ruled against her.