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Tuesday, December 07, 2021

Villagers submit memorandum against priest for building house after demolishing temple

Under the guise of carrying out renovation work of the temple, Mahant Gajanand had demolished the temple and later built a one-storeyed house in 2012.

By: Express News Service | Surat |
November 16, 2021 10:38:55 pm
The villagers alleged that the priest prepared fake documents and took possession of the properties of temple premises of 1200-square-feet area and a Dharmashala and 12 bigah of the farming land.

Several villagers along with Bajrang Dal members in Bharuch, submitted a memorandum to the district collector against a temple priest alleging that the he had demolished a Ram temple and has constructed his own house on the plot in 2012.

According to the memorandum, a copy of which is with The Indian Express, Mahant Gajanand Chaturdas, Bharuch taluka BJP general secretary and husband of Detral village sarpanch, demolished the Ram temple at the village.

Mahant Gajanand had mentioned the names of wife Naynaben and two of his close aides as trustees of the temple.

The villagers alleged that the priest prepared fake documents and took possession of the properties of temple premises of 1200-square-feet area and a Dharmashala and 12 bigah of the farming land.

Under the guise of carrying out renovation work of the temple, Mahant Gajanand had demolished the temple and later built a one-storeyed house in 2012. He had shifted the idols at the temple to Mahadev temple, the memorandum further said.

Earlier, Mohammed Mansuri, a villager, had submitted a memorandum to the district collector in 2019 against the priest, but no action was taken.

Later another villager, Mayurkant Patel, had given a complaint to Bharuch district collector, to register an offence under the anti-land grabbing Act against Mahant Gajanand Chaturdas his family members for allegedly encroaching temple land.

Patel had also lodged a complaint with Bharuch police against Mahant Gajanand and his son on October 22, after the father and son allegedly attacked him to withdraw the complaint filed before the collector.

In the memorandum, the villagers had demanded that a new trust should be made and till that time an administrator should be appointed. The house of Mahant Gajanand should be demolished and a temple should be constructed in the same place, villagers said in the memorandum.

Bharuch collector Tushar Sumera said, “We have received a memorandum from the residents of Detral village. We will probe into the allegations leveled by them and will later decide our future course of action.”

Mayurkant Patel said, “Mahant Gajanand has influence among the political leaders and government officials. So, no action had been taken against him. In the memorandum we have demanded that the new temple should be made at its original plot and those idols of Gods shifted to Mahadev temple should be brought back. Mahant Gajanand should be charged under anti-land grabbing Act.”

Bajrang Dal South Gujarat region president Sejal Desai said, “The temple trust has three properties and 12 bighas of land whose market value is of crores of rupees. Mahant Gajanand, with the help of forged documents, became a trustee and a grabbed the three properties and 12 bigah of temple trust land.”

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