Hindu Janajagruti Samiti seeks removal of ‘non-Hindu’ shops from vicinity of temples

Bengaluru – Hindu Janajagruti Samiti on 24th March demanded the removal of all shops and establishments run by ‘non-Hindus’ in the vicinity of temples under the Karnataka Muzrai (Endowments) Department. A delegation led by Mr Mohan Gowda (Spokesperson of HJS for Karnataka) met the Commissioner Rohini Sindhuri and submitted a memorandum to this effect.

“Non-Hindus owning chappal shops in the premises of Sri Anjaneya Temple in Upparpet in the central area of Majestic in Bengaluru. Though the lease period has expired in 2014, the shopkeepers have continued with their business in an unauthorised manner. This is in contravention of the Karnataka Endowments Act 1997. Though Section 29(8)(12) in the aforesaid Act specifically mentions that non-Hindus should not be given any land, buildings sites or any properties, it has been observed that for the past 40 years, non-Hindus have been participating in Annual fairs of some temples that are under the purview of the Karnataka Muzrai Department. Though the Act specifically mentions excluding people who may destroy the sanctity and heritage of temples, it is a crime that in clear violation of the Act, non-Hindus have been permitted. The failure of the Department officials to take action on the protection of temples shows their irresponsibility”, he added.

Mr Gowda said that shops had been sub-leased through auctions and there were 2 shops inside and 4 outside the temple premises. “Since 2014, this lease has not been renewed which has also added to the loss to the State exchequer.

Non-Hindus cannot do business in and around Hindu temples : Karnataka Government

The Karnataka government informed the Legislative Assembly that as per the Hindu Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments Act 2002, non-Hindus cannot do business in and around the premises of Hindu religious institutions.

To a question from Congress MLAs UT Khader and Rizwan Arshad in the Assembly on banners, flyers and posters being distributed in religious places asking non-Hindus to vacate shops and stop business outside the temples, Law Minister JC Madhuswamy justified that there is a law which prevents them from doing so.

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