India

Subpoenas of the Gods

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ramhanuman

A Telegraph correspondent in India describes a dispute "over ownership of a 1.4-acre plot in Dhanbad which adjoins a temple dedicated to Ram and another one dedicated to the monkey god Hanuman." The priest claims to own the land, while the congregants say it belongs to the gods themselves. To resolve the debate, a judge has

placed notices in newspapers…asking gods Ram and Hanuman to appear in his court next week to present their arguments.

"You failed to appear in court despite notices sent by a messenger and later through registered post. You are hereby directed to appear before the court personally," Judge Singh's notice stated.

The newspaper notices were published, in keeping with accepted Indian legal practice, after two summons dispatched to the plaintiff deities were returned because their addresses were "incomplete".

In a parallel development,

Tweety may get a chance to take the witness stand and sing like a canary. An Italian court ordered the animated

mickeymouse

bird, along with Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and his girlfriend Daisy, to testify in a counterfeiting case.

In what lawyers believe was a clerical error…the court summons cites Titti, Paperino, Paperina, Topolino -- the Italian names for the characters -- as damaged parties in the criminal trial of a Chinese man accused of counterfeiting products of Disney and Warner Bros.