Stalin clarifies on allegations raised in appointment of temple priests

Chief Minister MK Stalin on Tuesday said that people will identify those who try to distort social justice in appointing persons of all castes as temple priests.

“A section of people could not tolerate the appointment of people of all castes as temple priests and have undertaken a planned assault on the scheme. Nowhere the jobs of the existing temple priests were seized and given to others. If there is proof, they can submit it and the state will take action. People will identify those who are trying to distort social justice for political vendetta by criticising the appointment of persons of all castes as temple priests,” said Stalin, in the Assembly.

Earlier, Thousand Lights MLA Dr N Ezhilan, in his maiden speech in the Assembly, said a false propaganda is being undertaken about the appointment of persons of all castes as temple priests and asked Hindu Religious and Endowments (HR & CE) Minister PK Sekar Babu to clarify on the issue.

Sekar Babu replied that out of the total 58 appointments in various temples all the persons selected were given appointment orders for the existing vacancies and no person was removed from the job. He quoted the example of a priest named Velmurugan appointed in Naganatha Swamy Temple in Tiruchirappalli where the already appointed priest was working in two temples. The priest was shifted to one temple and in the newly created vacancy a new appointment was given.

Similarly, in Venkatachalapathy Temple Ranganatha Pattar retired after attaining 60 years and so a new vacancy rose in which one Srinivasan was appointed. Even priests who are 70-year-old are not removed, but given jobs in smaller temples attached to the main temples, added Sekar Babu.