CHENNAI: There seems to be no end to the fight between the Thengalai and Vadagalai sects for the rights to chant mantras during the Brahmotsavam at the Varadarajaperumal temple in Kancheepuram as the Madras High Court on Friday kept in abeyance the recent orders of the executive trustee and assistant commissioner (AC) of the Tamil Nadu Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) department and a single judge of the High Court.
The fresh orders were passed by a vacation division bench of Justices R Mahadevan and GK Ilanthiraiyan after hearing an urgent writ appeal filed by TA Ranganathan, from the Thengalai sect.As agreed by both parties, all connected matters were directed to be posted after the summer vacation along with the present writ appeals after obtaining orders from the Chief Justice. “Till such time, notice dated May 14, 2022 issued by assistant commissioner/executive trustee of Devarajaswamy temple and the order of the (single) judge dated May 17 shall be kept in abeyance,” the bench said in the order.
Since the orders of the AC and the single judge are being kept in abeyance, it would deprive both Thengalai and Vadagalai sects of the opportunity to chant mantras.As per the AC’s order, only the Thengalai sect was to chant the mantras. However, Justice SM Subramaniam passed orders permitting the Thengalai sect to commence its initial recital (Srisaila Dayapathram), and thereafter, the Vadagalai sect to chant its initial recital (Sri Ramanuja Dayapathram) within 10-12 seconds each.
The petitioner alleged the single judge’s order was erroneous and contrary to facts and established principles of law. The judge ought to have considered that the Thengalai sect has an exclusive ‘adhyapaka mirasi’ right of ceremonial worship in respect of the prabandham service at the temple as the right was recognised, recorded, confirmed, and reiterated by the Madras HC in appeals made in 1910 and 1963, the petitioner added. The judge appears to have erred in passing the impugned order when the writ petition was only for a certiorari to quash the notice/order of the AC of the temple, the petitioner stated.