Chennai: The Madras High Court has restrained controversial 'godman' Swami Nithyananda from functioning as the head of four temple mutts in and around Tiruvarur.
Justice R Shivakumar also stayed further proceedings in a suit filed by Nithyananda pending before the Principal Sub-Court in Nagapattinam in respect of properties of the mutts.
The judge granted an interim stay on Nithyananda continuing as the Madadhipathi of Somanatha Swami Temple and Mutt at Thiruvarur, Sri Po.Ka.Sathukkal Mutt at Vedaranyam, Sri Arunachal Gnanadesikar Swamigal, Sri Palasamy and Sankarasamy Mutt, Thiruvarur, and issued notice to him returnable by 14 March.
The order was passed yesterday on a civil revision petition by Salem-based Sarada Niketan Samithi Trust members, including Swami Atmananda, who are also trustees of the four mutts.
Originally Nithyananda filed a suit before the Nagapattinam sub-court seeking a declaration from it that he was the head of these Mutts and Athmananda and others were non-trustees.
He had also sought a relief of injunction restraining Athmananda from interfering in the administration and meddling with the properties of the mutts. Athmananda in his petition submitted that Nithyananda had approached them and provided false assurance that he will improve the four mutts.
But under the guise of making a donation of Rs 2 crore for the mutts, Nithyanananda filed a suit as if he was the administrator and tried to grab the properties by one way or other.
Stating that the suit was not maintainable and that they were the managing trustees and administrator of the above mentioned mutts, Athmananda and two others prayed the high court to stay all further proceedings in the matter before the principal sub-court.