CPI(M) leaders ask State government to reject the report

The State unit of the CPI(M) and Leader of the Opposition V.S. Achuthanandan have come down heavily on the report of the Supreme Court-appointed amicus curiae on the safe upkeep of valuables at the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple accusing him of trying to mislead the apex court and vest control of the temple with the royal family of erstwhile Travancore.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) State secretary Pinarayi Vijayan told a news conference here on Thursday that the amicus curiae had clearly exceeded his brief. The amicus curiae’s suggestion that a member of the royal family should be appointed as chief executive officer of the temple and persons close to the family should be made members of the administrative body showed a clear intention to place the temple under the control of the family. “The amicus curiae has become a servant of the royal family,” he said.

The State government was yet to take a stand on the issue, but the amicus curiae was on record that it generally favoured his suggestions and was appreciative of it. The State government should reject the report of the amicus curiae and take a stand on the issue only through democratic discussions. It could even consider convening an all-party meeting to discuss the issue and arrive at a clear stand, he said and hoped that the Supreme Court would also reject the report.

Court orders

Expressing similar views in a statement here on Thursday, Mr. Achuthanandan accused the amicus curiae of having become ‘the counsel for one of the parties’ to the dispute. The Thiruvananthapuram principal sub-court had ordered in 2007 that the current head of the royal family had no right to claim control over the temple. The Kerala High Court had upheld this decision in 2011 and directed that an independent administrative mechanism on the lines of the Guruvayur Devaswom Board be constituted to govern the temple. The amicus curiae’s report could not be used to overturn the decisions of the sub-court and the High Court.

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