MV Govindan, state secretary CPI(M), Kerala, Pookkottukalikavu Temple, Kerala High Court, politicians, political parties, temple affairs
CPI(M) Kerala state secretary M V Govindan said during the party’s state-wide month-long Peoples Defence Rally that "what the High Court said is also our stand" | Pic: Twitter

CPI(M) says it agrees with Kerala HC; politicians should not oversee temple affairs

The ruling CPI(M) has said it agrees with the order of the Kerala High Court that those involved in active politics are ineligible to oversee affairs of temples.

CPI(M) state secretary M V Govindan said temples should not be administered by politicians or political parties. “That is our stand. What the High Court said is also our stand. Be it the Congress, RSS, BJP or Marxist, none of them need to be administering or presiding over temple affairs,” he said.

Govindan was speaking to reporters on Wednesday in Kannur district in between the party’s state-wide month-long Peoples Defence Rally, which began from Kasaragod on Monday.

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Court decision

The Kerala High Court had on Tuesday held that three persons — two local CPI(M) leaders and one DYFI leader — were ineligible to be appointed as non-hereditary trustees of the Pookkottukalikavu Temple under the Malabar Devaswom Board in Ottapalam taluk of Palakkad district.

The court said the notification inviting applications for appointment of non-hereditary trustees in Pookkottukalikavu Temple clearly stipulated that those with criminal cases registered against them or working in active politics were ineligible for the post.

“So persons who are actively involved in politics, whether or not they hold any post in a political party are ineligible,” the court had said.

The order had come on a plea moved by some persons challenging the appointment of the three persons as trustees in the temple.

DYFI connection

One of the appointees, who was a local office-bearer in DYFI — the youth wing of CPI(M) — contended that he was not ineligible for appointment as trustee as DYFI was not a political organisation. He had also contended that members of DYFI can work in any political party.

The high court rejected the contention. “…it is stated that a member of the DYFI can work in any political party. That does not mean that the DYFI does not have any political colour,” the court had said.

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“Whether or not it has any affiliation to any particular political party, what is evident from the constitution of DYFI is that the area of activities of DYFI is politics and related activities. As such it cannot be said that the activities of DYFI are non-political,” the court further said.

Here, however, Govindan differed with the high court as he was of the view that DYFI was not a political organisation.

He contended that DYFI was a youth outfit and had no political affiliations.

(With agency inputs)

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