Kerala's Padmanabhaswamy temple: SC cracks whip, orders clean up of water tanks by 15 May
On Monday, the Supreme Court directed the Kerala Water Authority (KWA) to clean the water tanks of the Kerala's famed Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple and take measures to stop sewage and construction debris from flowing inside the temple premises.
The Supreme Court, on Monday, directed the Kerala Water Authority (KWA) to clean the water tanks of Kerala's famed Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple and take measures to stop sewage and construction debris from flowing inside the temple premises by 15 May.
The Hindu reported that the three-judge bench comprising Chief Justice of India JS Khehar, DY Chandrachud and Sanjay Kishan Kaul directed the KWA to do so after amicus curiae and senior advocate Gopal Subramaniam told them the temple, which had an estimated wealth of Rs 1 lakh crore, was falling in a state of disrepair.
Subramaniam told the court that the temple tanks were filthy and the priests were finding it difficult to take a dip before participating in the rituals. “How can the priests bathe in such water... this is injustice,” he said.
He told the apex court that once a clean up was ordered, devotees from around the world would send money to the temple.
According to a report in The Times of India, Subramaniam informed the court that the sewer of the nearby locality emptied into the temple tanks and the matter required urgent attention if the temple was to regain its pure surroundings.
He asked of what use the temple's riches were if the principal deity needed urgent restoration and the roof of the sanctum sanctorum needed major repair.
The bench then instructed the KWA to undertake repair of sewer lines in the locality to stop discharge into the temple tanks. Though Kerala government's counsel Joydeep Gupta said the work could take up to four months, the bench ordered that it must be completed by 15 May and tasked the KWA to do the work without inviting tender.
The court also gave instructions for restoration of the main deity and repair of the roof of the sanctum sanctorum: It told the temple administration, headed by the district judge, to invite expression of intent from experts in traditional Kerala method of restoration work and bring them before the court on or before 17 April for finalisation of work allocation.
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