Trust board with retired Madras HC judges not possible in all temples: TN to SC

Tamil Nadu Govt has informed the Supreme Court that it is impossible to appoint trust board comprising retired judge  for each of the over 38,000 temples managed by HR&CE.

Published: 27th January 2023 05:54 AM  |   Last Updated: 27th January 2023 05:54 AM   |  A+A-

Supreme court

A view of the Supreme Court. (Photo | EPS)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Tamil Nadu Govt has informed the Supreme Court that it is impossible to appoint trust board comprising retired judge  for each of the over 38,000 temples managed by HR&CE. The state added that the process of appointment of trustees in temples has commenced for 1,045 temples all over state and will be completed within six months.

“The trust board is formed to run day-to-day administration of religious institutions and also to implement welfare schemes, renovations and development activities. Fit persons appointed under the Act are functioning,” the affidavit states. 

The response was filed by HR&CE commissioner, in a plea by Hindu Dharma Parishad seeking appointment of Arangavalar Committee (Trustee Committee) headed by Retired Judge in all Hindu Temples with a social activist, a devotee, a Scheduled Caste person and a woman as its members.
The Madras High Court had dismissed Parishad’s writ seeking similar relief. It was argued before the HC that several temples in TN were not maintained well.

Emphasising on the fact that over 38k temples in the state are administered by individual and separate trust boards, the state told the apex court that it is impossible to appoint a trust board for each temple consisting a retired judge. 

“Ground raised that ruling political parties are being appointed as trustees are denied. The applications received for appointment of trustees are duly scrutinized and antecedents are verified through the (police) inspector. The persons who are suffering disqualification prescribed under Section 26 of the Act are not considered for appointment,” the affidavit states. 

While terming the grounds raised in the plea as “baseless” the state has also called as erroneous the conclusion that all temples have properties and ornaments running into lakhs and crores. “Only a very few hundreds of temples alone having hundreds of Acres of lands and few hundreds of buildings. Only a very few temples are having much valued Gold ornaments,” the affidavit states. 

The affidavit further added that even though the Trust Board is not yet formed, the work of renovation and development is conducted periodically and Kumbabishegam is also held at temples where ever necessary.


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