In a plea seeking action against encroachment of land owned by a Hindu “mutt”, the Madras High Court bench here has impleaded heads of as many as 32 similar religious bodies directing them to furnish to the government data on their properties and revenue. Hearing a public interest petition filed by a devotee, Radhakrishnan, a division bench comprising justices Kirubakaran and Tharani impleaded the heads of all the “mutts” called “Adheenams” in Tamil Nadu as respondents and directed them to provide details. The information on properties owned by the “mutts” and revenue from it should be submitted to the inspector general of registration and the top authority should confirm the same, the court said.
The petitioner submitted that “Senkol Adheenam” owned several acres of lands in Tuticorin and Tirunelveli districts and the “mutt” authorities were supposed to undertake religious work and service to devotees from the revenue earned from the properties. Administration of the “adheenam”, however, did not function properly recently, and several persons had encroached the lands and the religious work of the “adheenam” was affected, Radhakrishnan contended.
He sought a direction from the court to the government to constitute a committee in this regard. The committee should comprise district collectors of Tuticorin, Tirunelveli and Joint Commissioner of Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department and it should take steps to vacate the encroachments after conducting a survey, he submitted.