The Kerala high court has directed that the opinion of the `tantri’ of Sree Poornathrayeesa Temple at Tripunithura should be ascertained regarding Cochin Devaswom Board’s move to transfer gold ornaments at the temple to the board’s head office at Thrissur.A division bench led by justice Thottathil B Radhakrishnan directed for obtaining the opinion of the `tantri’ while considering a petition moved by Sangh Parivar leader and writer TG Mohandas. The opinion of `tantri’ is required as he is the authority to say which all ornaments are being used daily for rituals, the court said.
While considering Mohandas’ petition in December last year, the high court had stayed the board’s move to transfer the gold. The devaswom board is trying to transfer the valuables worth crores of rupees without even preparing an inventory or stock register, the petition filed through advocate Jaishankar V Nair said. Also, the board has not taken any steps to ascertain which of the ornaments are necessary for the temple’s rituals, the petition filed through advocate stated.
The ornaments and other valuables were dedicated to the deity by the Maharaja of Kochi and other devotees and they should be kept in the temple itself. Transferring the ornaments dedicated to the deity will offend the faith of the devotees, it was contended.
No `devaprashnam’ (astrological consultation) was conducted nor clearance from the `tantri’ (head priest) was obtained by the board before taking the decision to transfer the ornaments and valuable, the petitioner had alleged.
The petitioner had also expressed the fear that the gold and ornaments will be misused and diverted for purposes other than for which those were dedicated to the temple.
Responding to the petition, the board had informed that only gold left unused or unfit for rituals at the temple was proposed to be transferred to its head office.