The Shri Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Kerala is in dire financial straits, its governing body has pointed out to the Supreme Court. Donations from devotees are also not enough to help the temple recover from the financial crisis, he said. The Padmanabhaswamy Temple is run by the Travancore dynasty. Meanwhile, the Administrative Committee has now asked the Supreme Court to conduct an audit of the trust related to the temple.
Senior counsel R Basant, who was present on behalf of the committee, directed Justice U. U.S. Lalit, Justice S. Ravindra Bhat and Justice Bela M Trivedi told the bench that all the temples in Kerala are closed and the monthly cost of the temple is Rs 1.25 crore. So we rarely get Rs 60-70 lakh. So we have requested some guidelines. This time, Basant also said, “Currently, the temple is under huge financial strain. We can’t work in that position. ”
Trust should contribute for temple expenses!
Basant told the bench that the trust was set up on a court order. Therefore, he should contribute to the temple. The trust’s senior lawyer, Arvind Datar, argued that it was a public trust set up by the royal family. He has no role in the administration. It was mentioned before the Supreme Court only after Amicus Curiae demanded an audit of the trust’s accounts. Datar said it does not need to be audited, as it is separate from the temple.
Supreme Court quashes Kerala High Court decision
The court had reserved its order after completing the hearing on an application seeking exemption from last year’s order to audit the Shri Padmanabhaswamy Temple Trust for 25 years. Earlier, the apex court had quashed the Kerala High Court’s 2011 order. In the Kerala High Court order, the state government was asked to set up a trust to manage the historic temple and control the properties.
Court orders audit
Considered one of the richest temples in the country, the Supreme Court had upheld the rights of the Travancore dynasty. At the suggestion of Amicus Curiae and senior counsel Gopal Subramaniam, the court had directed the governing body to audit the income and expenditure of the temple for the last 25 years.