Collector to inquire into temple land appropriation case


Collector (in-charge) S. Shantha Kumar will conduct the second-level of detailed inquiry on July 14 into a recent complaint by Meenakshi Sundareswarar temple administration on the appropriation of 14 acre of temple land in Ponmeni by an individual.

Ahead of the enquiry, members of the Tamil Nadu Revenue Officials Association (TNROA) submitted a representation to the Collector on June 11. In the petition, the members stated that the Tahsildar, who was accused of forging documents in the case, was only uploading data and not transferring the patta to a new name.

The patta of the land valued at around ₹ 200 crore is said to have been transferred from temple owned to private land on October 15, 2018 to an individual named Velivamuthu Yogeswaran.

State secretary of TNROA, M.P. Murugaiyan, said that the officer implicated in the case was only digitally uploading the documents on instructions of the Director of Survey and Settlement on the said date of the fraud.

“In the Town Survey Land Records maintained by Corporation, Revenue department and the Village Administrative Officers, since around 2006 the patta is not in the name of the Meenakshi temple. We have no problems with a detailed inquiry into the matter. We request the Collector, however, to go as far back as 2006 and not make judgements based on data procured in 2018 and charge the officer,” he said.

A senior official from the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments department said that several attempts had been made in the past to transfer the temple land patta as it is valuable property. All officials need to be vigilant in the matter to prevent further such forgery, he said.

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