What fate awaits Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple?
In my previous post on the Lakshadeepam trip to Trivandrum, I had mentioned that there “have been a few controversies surrounding the temple over the last few months”. I didn’t touch upon it since I thought most of the readers would know about what was going on. However, Apple had asked for the details of the controversy, and that sparked this post :).
Well, it is pretty simple, buddy. It all started with a local court delivering a landmark judgement — the Travancore Royal Family cannot lay claim on the temple; the State Government should take a decision on who should administer the temple. On the same day, came the allegation that the State Government is following a hidden agenda against the Hindu places of worship, especially considering the wealth inside the temple.
Then came the news that the State Government is not intending to take over the temple, but would take a decision in consultation with the royal family. The last controversy I heard of involved the Executive Officer — that he is a Christian.
I am sure the temple has seen far better days than this, and I would pray for the future of the temple, since these days humans decide the fate of Gods (sometimes rightly so, though I am not sure about this particular instance!).
If, God forbid, the temple is taken away from the purview of the royal family (who had taken care of this great temple for more than two and a half centuries with utter dedication and devotion, and without reverting to crass commercialization seen in most other big temples), the next best thing to happen would be to have a separate Devaswam or Trust in the mode of Guruvayoor Devaswam.
This would be far better than leaving the administration of the temple to the State run Devaswam Board, especially since it is virtually assured that for five years out of ten, the Government will be run by Atheists. Frankly, I don’t have anything against either the Theists or the Atheists, but it is just not right if one group were to “administer” the activities of the other!
Just in case you are wondering what this fuss about the royal family is all about, read this article in The Hindu to get an insight about why this royal family is different and simple. Travancore is just plain lucky to have had such intelligent and talented rulers taking care of the state.
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