Writ Plea on Temple Demolition Rejected - The New Indian Express

Writ Plea on Temple Demolition Rejected

Published: 17th December 2013 07:22 AM

Last Updated: 17th December 2013 07:22 AM

The Madras High Court has rejected a writ plea to restrain the Chennai Corporation from demolishing a temple constructed to perpetuate the memory of former Chief Minister MG Ramachandran right next to its main entrance on the northern side. No one has any right to encroach upon public space to construct religious or other structures, the second bench of Justices SK Agnihotri and KK Sasidharan said on Monday.

“Courts are concerned only with the removal of encroachments on public road and it is no matter whether it is a temple, Islamic shrine or church. The court cannot tolerate construction of religious building by encroaching public road. Those who want to establish temple, church or shrine must locate it in private lands. The public road is for people. It is not for doing business or constructing religious structures,” observed the bench.

The bench was passing orders on a PIL from Kantha Srinivasan, trustee of  Sri Needhi Karumariamman Temple on NSC Bose Road. The Chennai Corporation issued a notice on November 28, 2010 ordering the removal of the temple. It was, however, not removed as the matter was pending in court.

There is no dispute that the petitioner has got a right to establish religious institutions of her choice and to worship. However, she has no right to construct a temple by encroaching on public property. She, without any kind of permission from the local body, constructed a temple by violating the laws with impunity. She has no regard to the law of the land.  She wanted to perpetuate the illegality by pleading that the temple has been in existence for more than 27 years. The court cannot be a party to such violation, the bench said.

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