Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple
Supreme Court upholds the rights of Travancore royal family in the administration of Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple at Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala. The verdict was pronounced on Monday on the dispute over management of Thiruvananthapuram’s historic Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple, which is considered one of the richest temples in the country.
The controversy over the administration and management of the historic temple was pending in the apex court for last nine years in the wake of charges of alleged financial irregularities.
The sprawling temple, an architectural splendour in granite, was rebuilt in its present form in the 18th century by the Travancore Royal House which had ruled southern Kerala and some adjoining parts of Tamil Nadu before integration of the princely state with the Indian Union in 1947.
Even after India’s independence, the temple continued to be governed by a trust controlled by the erstwhile royal family for whom Lord Padmanabha (Vishnu) is their family deity.
A bench of Justices U U Lalit and Indu Malhotra had on April 10 last year reserved its judgement on the pleas challenging the January 31, 2011 verdict of the Kerala High Court in the matter.
The high court had directed the state government to take steps to set up a body or trust to take control of the temple, its assets and management and to run the temple in accordance with the traditions.
The apex court had on May 2, 2011 stayed the high court’s direction regarding taking over of the assets and management of the temple.
The top court had also directed that there shall be a detailed inventory of the articles, valuables, ornaments in Kallaras (vaults).