Don't okay Endowments Bill: Samithi's plea to Guv

Don't okay Endowments Bill: Samithi's plea to Guv

Addressing a press meet here on Saturday, Devasthana mathu Dharmika Samsthegala Mahasangha Vice-President Lakshmeesha Gabladka said the Bill has kept mutts and its temples out of the government’s purview along with Jain Basadi, Buddhist Vihara, Gurudwara. The Council and Assembly has passed it ignoring Karnataka HC directives and the recommendations of a committee headed by M Rama Jois.

This means the mutts’ books can’t be accessed by the government even though they receive huge money from the public. However, the remaining temples, Daivasthanas, Bhajan mandirs will be brought directly under the control of the government.

He said “all the money collected by the temples will be collected and will be used for any religious programmes. The government will have the right to use it for other purposes.”

Gabladka said “Dharmika Parishat will be constituted to look into the affairs of the temples. The Parishat will be entrusted with the powers to appoint priests and other employees to the temples. Moreover, the minister for Religious Endowment will be the chief officer of the Parishat. The members for the Parishat will be nominated by the government, Hence, there are all possibility of Minister’s persons getting the membership,” he added.

He said “as per the column 31 of the Bill, each temple and religious institutions should provide complete details on the property owned by the temple including gold, silver ornaments and other valuable property to the government within six months. Once the Bill comes into force, then all the land dealings of the temples, donation to the temples will be fully in the hands of the Parishat. Even if a temple had to file a case, then it will be decided by the Parishat. Once the Bill is okayed, then all the temples will have to be registered under Parishat. Even to raise the donation, permission of the Parishat is essential,” he added.

The Bill was passed amidst stiff resistance from the opposition. If the temple administration is taken over by the government, then the temples will be converted into a corrupt centre, he lamented.

Gabaladka said those temples which earn more than Rs 10 lakh income per annum, have to pay 10 per cent of the income to the government. Those temples which earn income below Rs 10 lakh and above Rs 5 lakh have to pay 5 per cent of the income to the government.

Campaign

The Hindu Janajagruthi Samithi will hold signature campaign against the Bill. In fact, post cards will be sent to the Minister for Religious Endowment and the Governor. “Our fight will continue till the bills are withdrawn,” he said.

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