After a lull, a long standing dispute between two groups at Nanjanad village near here came to the fore on Tuesday.

For the past nearly 30 years the two groups (both made up of members belonging to the predominant Badaga community of The Nilgiris) have been fighting over the right to perform pujas at the local Sri Nanjundeswarar temple.

Division

With the dispute manifesting in many ways there is now a sharp division with the residents of about 120 houses on one side and the residents of around 900 on the other.

With the intervention of the Madras High Court being sought, the authorities here had been asked to ensure that people belonging to both groups are allowed to perform pujas.

However, those belonging to the minority group said that the situation at the village was not conducive for such an arrangement.

They wanted the district administration to create a suitable situation.

Emphasising this, about 40 of them including some women led by their leader S.Sivaraman gathered at the Collectorate here on Tuesday and raised slogans in support of their demands.

Urging the authorities to implement the order of the High Court relating to the performance of pujas, they wanted the temple, which has remained closed for a long time, to be reopened.

They also wanted the village community hall to be opened to both the groups.

Talks

District Revenue Officer Bhaskara Pandiyan, who held talks with them, said that whenever the villagersdecided to perform pujas security would be provided to them.

Consequently, the villagers, who had threatened to observe a fast in front of the Collectorate, decided to put it on hold.

Deputy Superintendent of Police G.S.Anita told The Hindu that if they had gone ahead with their proposed fast they would have been arrested as they had not obtained permission.

More In: Coimbatore