Monday, December 11, 2023

If temples perpetuate violence, it is better to close them: Madras High Court

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Madras High Court. Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

Better to shut down temples if they end up perpetuating violence, the Madras High Court remarked on Friday, while hearing a case of dispute between two religious groups over a temple festival, Live Law reported.

“Temple festivals are perpetuating violence and it is only becoming a centre stage for groups to show who is powerful in a particular area. There is no devotion involved in conducting these festivals and rather it has become a show of strength by one group or the other,” Justice Anand Venkatesh observed.

The court was hearing a plea moved by K Thangarasu, claiming to be the Hereditary Trustee of Arulmighu Sri Ruthra Maha Kaliyamman Alayam seeking police protection for conducting a festival at the temple, the legal portal reported.

The court dismissed the plea.

Meanwhile, the Tamil Nadu government had told the court that two rival groups were engaged in a dispute over who had the right to place the idol inside the temple during the festival.

After a peace committee failed to resolve the conflict, the state government submitted that holding the festival could lead to law and order problems and neither of the groups should be allowed to place the idol.

The court noted that the police have more important functions to perform, and their time and energy should not be invested in resolving disputes between rival groups in a temple.

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