The proposal to nominate ladies and members of different communities as clergymen in temples in Tamil Nadu is not only a spiritual exercise, however is a component of a bigger social engineering to make sure equal alternative to all, a precept the DMK authorities is dedicated to, Hindu Spiritual & Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) Minister P.Okay. Sekar Babu has mentioned in an interview. Edited excerpts:
You introduced that clergymen can be appointed to temples administered by the HR&CE Division. How would you facilitate this? Do you count on a great response from aspirants?
Aspiring candidates will probably be educated and appointed as clergymen in temples in accordance with the principles. The federal government will certainly help ladies who’re taken with taking on the job of a temple priest. I’m stunned on the questions being raised on the transfer to nominate ladies as clergymen. When ladies might be engaged in lots of different works in temples, why can’t they be engaged as clergymen? After we are open to appointing folks from any group as clergymen in temples, why prohibit ladies? We’ve additionally obtained representations from ladies looking for a chance to function clergymen. Partaking ladies as clergymen just isn’t merely a spiritual exercise, however is a component of a bigger social transformation initiative to make sure equal participation — a precept the DMK authorities is dedicated to.
As regards taking on the job of a temple priest as a profession, I’m positive it isn’t simply the cash that issues to folks. Doing the divine responsibility of serving God offers large satisfaction. Having mentioned that, I’d additionally add that the remuneration of clergymen in smaller temples that don’t generate a lot earnings is into consideration for revision.
What plans do it’s a must to promote temples? Many temple lands have been encroached upon and properties have been let loose for decrease leases…
Transparency would be the foremost pillar of temple administration. We’ve already printed the title paperwork for greater than 3.50 lakh acres of temple lands on our web site. The method of retrieving the stability temple lands is below means. A large drive has been launched to determine properties in city areas, evict the encroachers and fence the premises.
An in depth assessment has been undertaken to reach on the demand assortment and stability of every property, and the identical will quickly be printed on the official web site. The defaulters’ listing can even be printed quickly. Vital provisions have been created within the on-line software program to add the permitted price range statements of every temple in order that anybody may look at it. Particular groups have been shaped to revise the hire of retailers on temple lands, accumulate dues and expedite the disposal of associated circumstances pending within the courts.
Do you’ve gotten any plans to deploy IT purposes to result in effectivity in temple administration and asset administration?
We’re going to conduct a drone and Differential World Positioning System (DGPS) survey to digitise each inch of temple property and publish the identical on the official web site with 3D pictures. We’ve commenced the digitisation of everlasting registers, information and linked information and, wherever potential, these information can be printed on-line. Extra on-line providers will probably be launched to help devotees with making bookings for the supply of prasadam and endeavor uzhavaara panigal (voluntary cleansing service in temples), and live-streaming of pujas, archanai and different vital occasions will probably be undertaken.
Many historic temples appear to lack the sources for renovation to showcase their significance and architectural marvel. Do you’ve gotten any plans to develop them and put them on the tourism map of Tamil Nadu?
The HR&CE Division administers over 38,000 temples, of which greater than 34,000 have an annual earnings of lower than ₹10,000. And, 12,959 temples are lined below the Oru Kaala Poojai scheme, as a part of which they get a quarterly receipt from mounted deposits. It’s true that many temples don’t have ample monetary sources to undertake renovation work. The Chief Minister has promised to spend ₹1,000 crore to undertake Thiruppanigal (renovation work) in temples. We’re within the technique of getting ready the estimates for it. I guarantee you that every one temples that want sources to undertake renovation work will probably be given the required help.
In addition to, temple tanks will probably be renovated and temple vehicles repaired and rebuilt. We’re carefully coordinating with the Tourism Division to advertise non secular tourism, for which our State is well-known. Primary facilities for pilgrims will probably be offered in all temples in order that they’ll have a memorable darshan.
The poor wage construction of clergymen usually makes them depending on contributions from devotees…
We’ve been receiving grievances concerning the poor wage construction of the clergymen, and have began enquiring about these grievances. There are numerous varieties of staff in temples, like time scale, contract, each day wage, consolidated pay, service staff, and many others. There may be not a lot uniformity within the deployment of personnel in temples. The Chief Minister will probably be apprised of this problem, and a possible resolution will probably be arrived at quickly.
How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected temple revenues in 2020-2021 when in comparison with the earlier fiscal?
The pandemic has affected temple revenues. To mitigate the woes of clergymen and different temple staff who don’t have a set month-to-month earnings, they’re being offered a one-time monetary help of ₹4,000, 10 kg of rice and 15 varieties of groceries. Enough steps have been taken to vaccinate clergymen and different staff. This drive will proceed until everyone seems to be vaccinated.
What’s the standing of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams’ proposal for a web site to assemble a reproduction of the Tirumala temple in Chennai?
The proposal is into consideration. The TTD temple in T. Nagar is drawing a lot of devotees. It will be good to have a reproduction of the Tirumala temple in Chennai. We are going to convey it to the discover of the Chief Minister.
Critics say the DMK is “anti-Hindu”. Your views because the HR&CE Minister?
I strongly object to this. It’s being propagated by some sections who couldn’t tolerate the achievements of this Authorities, which has gained the assist of the devotees in a brief span of time. I guarantee you that this Authorities won’t offend anybody’s sentiments by its actions and can solely defend the curiosity of each devotee. Archanai in Tamil will probably be made accessible in all temples on the request of devotees.