Thiruvananthapuram : Travancore Devaswom Board president Prayar Gopalakrishnan said he was being victimised for opposing the government move to alter the tantric rituals and traditions of temples.
“From the issue of women entry at Sabarimala to throwing open the temples to non-Hindus, the present government wanted a lot of changes which were unacceptable to me,” he said.
Opening of Hindu religious study centres in 750 temples was another provocation for the CPM, Prayar told Express.
“We are being terminated when only a few days are left for the start of mandalam pilgrimage season. The callousness of the government towards Sabarimala is an insult to the millions of devotees,” he said.
Prayar said he was stepping out holding his head high. “I’m not being ousted for corruption or nepotism, but for upholding the ancient temple traditions,” he said.
On Devaswom Minister Kadakampally Surendran’s allegation that there were several complaints against the TDB, he said: “I will not answer to Kadakampally who had insulted me on many occasions,” he said.
Prayar flayed Kadakampally for attempting to notch the credit of appointing Dalit priests. “This historical decision was taken by the board during the tenure of the previous UDF government. What the Devaswom Recruitment Board did was a continuation of the procedures,” he said.
Prayar said Kadakampally’s move to open up temples to people of other faiths was part of the Marxist agenda to demean Hindus.During Prayar’s tenure, the TDB saw a slew of reforms starting with the revision of the salary of temple staff.
A special category was created for priests whose salary until then were on a par with sweepers. He was also instrumental in entrusting the responsibility of lighting makarajyothi to the chief priest of Pampa Ganapathy temple, which was earlier done by KSEB officers.
Source : News Indian Express