An young advocate’s efforts has saved 2,000 acres of Temple land worth nearly Rs.60,000 core from going to the hands of land sharks by illegal means. Advocate B Jagannath filed a Public Interest Litigation seeking a relief viz Writ of Mandamus in the nature directing the respondents, Inspector General of Registration and Sub-Registrar of Thiruporur not to alienate or create any encumbrance of the properties of Kandaswamy Murugan Temple Thiruporur and Alavandan Naicker Charity, Mamallapuram. The petitioner cited various Supreme Court judgments to protect the property of both, worth about Rs 60,000 (USD 8 Billion ) measuring roughly 2,000 acres, in accordance with Law. Organiser had raised the issue of usurping the temple land in 2019.
Talking to Organiser Weekly, Jagannath said “ I was shocked to read a news report in a English daily , “ Tiruruporur firing brings focus on shady land deals. In that it was mentioned that there were attempts to grab temple lands on East Coast Road (ECR) belonging to private, public and promboke on ECR stretch using double documentation, fake papers. The report also said unscrupulous elements, land sharks were involved. Over 20 gangs including some with political nexus were trying to lay their hands on the temple lands which are like hot cakes due to the presence of large numbers of IT companies on the stretch. 2,000 acres of land belonging to Kandasamy temple and Alavandar Naickar Charity at Mamallapuram. They are valued at about Rs 60,000 crores. The shady deal came to light when a real estate owner Imayam G Kumar and a DMK L Idhayavaram clashed with each other and subsequent firing by the MLA.”
The above petition came before the division bench comprising Justices M M Sundresh and R Hemalatha. After hearing both sides, the bench restrained the Thiruporur Sub-Registrar from creating any encumbrance on these properties. It has also directed the respondents to ring-fence about 2,000 acres along the Old Mahabalipuram Road (OMR) and the ECR near Chennai against lease, sale by fraud.
In his petition, Jagannath said lands administered by the Hindu Religious and Charitable (HR and CE) are coming under the jurisdiction of Thiruporur Sub-Registrar office. He said there were multiple attempts to transfer the above lands illegally. He sought an interim order directing the authorities to survey the entire land and file a status report with details within a reasonable time. He said in the petition “ The revenue, registration and HR and CE departments have significant collective responsibilities to act as a custodian and guardian of the temple lands and the manner in which the lands are being encroached and mis-appropriated is disgusting to say the least ”.
He had also sought direction to authorities to file interim status report with all details like Survey Number, boundaries , measurement of land and EC for 10 years, extract f of Patta, Chitta, Adangal, A Register, classification of immovable properties belonging to the above two temples within a reasonable time frame as fixed by this Hon’ble Court.
In another PIL petition moved by Jagannath , the HR and CE counsel took notice for the respondent. A division bench directed the HR and CE to complete all formalities within 12 weeks and perform the consecration in accordance with law. He, in his petition, sought directions to repair, renovate, reconstruct and perform Tirupani for Vijaya Varadaraja Perumal Temple at Babu Rayar Pettai near Acharapakkam in Chingleput district within a reasonable time frame.