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Elephant donations to temples are welcome: Minister

January 23, 2023 07:08 pm | Updated January 26, 2023 10:13 am IST - THANJAVUR

A temple elephant blesses school children in Karaikudi. File photo

A temple elephant blesses school children in Karaikudi. File photo | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

The Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowment Department welcomes donation of elephants to temples, according to HR and CE Minister P.K. Sekar Babu 

Speaking to reporters here on Monday, the Minister said that though bringing an elephant from the forest and rearing it should be avoided, the Department would consider rearing them at temples if anyone comes forward to donate them.

Responding to a question on appointment of trustees for temples in rural areas, he said that such appointments had never been made in the past through the Department. Trustees would be appointed to the temples having an income of ₹10,000 to over ₹10 lakh only.

While a government order would be issued with regard to the appointment of Trustees for the temples having an income of over or equal to ₹10 lakh, the Temple Trust Board members would be appointed by the District-level Trustee Boards for the temple having an income of up to ₹10,000, ₹1 lakh and ₹5 lakh, he added.

Regarding ‘annaithu sathiyinarum archagar’ scheme, he said that the scheme had been implemented successfully and thereby a situation had been created that 40 persons of all castes were entering the sanctum sanctorum of 40 temples in the State.

Earlier, the Minister inspected ‘Thilagar Thidal’ (the open ground where political party meetings and private functions are held) near Brhadeeswarar temple where it had been proposed to organise ‘Maha Sivarathri Vizha’ this year. Stating that it was organised in Mylapore, Chennai last year, he said it had been proposed to condcut the event at four more temples this year. The all-night events would be organised at Thiruvannamalai, Tirunelveli, Coimbatore, and Thanjavur apart from Mylapore.

When asked to disclose the amount allocated by the government for organising these events, he said that neither the State government nor the HR and CE Department would be releasing the funds required for organising these events.

The ‘Maha Sivarathri Vizha’ would be organised utilizing the funds of Kapaleeswarar Temple, Mylapore, Chennai; Arunachaleswarar Temple, Thiruvannamalai;i Nellaiappar Temple, Tirunelveli; Patteeswarar Temple, Coimbatore; and Brahadeeswarar Temple, Thanjavur.

In case more funds were required, it would be managed with the HR and CE Commissioner’s Public Welfare Fund and donations to be received from the donors/philanthropists. Details about the allocation of funds from the temples, donations received and expenditure incurred for organising these events would be released later, he added.

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