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HomeNationalKarnataka government's plan to free Hindu temples from state control 'historic mistake':...

Karnataka government’s plan to free Hindu temples from state control ‘historic mistake’: Congress

Bengaluru, Dec 30 (PTI) Karnataka Congress President D.K. Shivakumar on Thursday termed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led state government’s plan to free Hindu temples from state control as a historic mistake and said his party would not allow it.

He said that at present the temples owned by the government are the property of the state and its treasury.

“They are making a historical mistake, how can muzrai (department) or government temples be given to local people for administration? It is government’s property, fiscal asset, crores of rupees are collected by these temples. What kind of political stance is this? Are they (BJP) trying to do the same thing seen by some other states?

He told reporters here that this cannot happen in Karnataka and Congress will not allow it. The Congress leader said, “We are holding a meeting of all senior Congress leaders on January 4, during which we will discuss it and put forth our stand.”

The Karnataka government will bring in a law aimed at freeing Hindu temples from the laws and regulations that currently govern them. Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said this while addressing the state BJP executive meeting in Hubli on Wednesday.

The Chief Minister said, “I want to tell this executive that our government will bring a law to this effect before the budget session. We will free our temples from such laws and conditions. Nothing will happen except regulation. We will ensure that they are managed independently.”

This is being seen as another big step of the Bommai government. However, the bill is yet to become a law as it is pending its introduction and passage in the Legislative Council.

A total of 34,563 temples in the state come under the Muzrai (Hindu Religious Endowment) department, which are classified as Grade A, B and C on the basis of their revenue generation.

A total of 207 temples with annual revenue above Rs 25 lakh fall under Category A, 139 temples between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 25 lakh fall under Category B, and 34,217 temples under Category C with annual revenue less than Rs 5 lakh. come with revenue. Many Hindu organizations, including the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), have long demanded that temples be freed from government control and handed over to Hindu society.

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