Kottayam, Nov 23: Welcoming the Supreme Court order to draft a law exclusively covering the administration of Sabarimala temples, Pandalam Palace Managing Committee has said the hereditary Chief Priests and Pandalam Palace should have representation in the proposed administrative body.
Committee President P G Sasikumar Varma said the hereditary Chief Priests (Tantri) hailing from Thazhamon Madhom in Chengannur and the hereditary trustees of the Palace should have representation to ensure that the custom and practices are protected at Sabarimala.
He said the Palace was only concerned about the protection of the age-old custom and practices at Sabarimala.
Committee Secretary Narayana Varma said there were attempts by certain vested interests to malign the Palace that had always stood for protecting the interests of pilgrims and for strict adherence to the unique rituals at the temple. King Rajashekhara of the erstwhile Pandalam Royal Dynasty is believed to be the foster father of Lord Ayyappa alias Manikanta. The king had established the temple at Sabarimala and offered the Thiruvabharanam (sacred jewellery) to the deity.
Travancore Devaswom Board President N Vasu said the constitution of the Devaswom Board was drafted on the basis of the covenant entered into by the Maharaja of Travancore in May 1949 and concurred to and guaranteed by the Government of India. Hence the government could not set up a separate administrative body exclusively for Sabarimala as it would be against the principles of the covenant, Mr Vasu said.
The Board would file a counter affidavit before the Supreme Court, clarifying all these facts, he said. (UNI)