The Madras High Court has directed the state Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) department to examine a grievance on renting out space in the four mandapams in the corners of the tank of Kumbakonam temple and take a decision on the matter. The First bench, comprising Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice M Sundar gave the direction on a miscallenous petition filed by Elephant Rajendran that came up on Friday.
The petitioner submitted that the four mandapams in four corners of the tank of Kumbakonam temple are intended only for performing pooja and holy rituals. But the epartment had let out the space in the tank for commercial purposes, he said. Stating that the space should not be rented out to anyone, the petitioner sought a direction to remove those shops from the four Mandapams. He also claimed that a public convenience building being constructed on the western side of the temple was also allowed by the HR and CE department.
If the construction was allowed, then the department would construct such buildings in all 44 tanks in Kumbakonam. Disposing of the miscellaneous petition, the bench directed the HR&CE department to examine the grievance and take a decision on the same and intimate it to the petitioner.
In another petition, seeking a direction to appoint a committee headed by a retired High Court judge to go into expenditure of the allocated fund of Rs 120 crore by the Tamil Nadu government for Kumbakonam Mahamaham festival, the bench had said though the festival was over, it was not an end and all encroachments have to be removed.