Nagpur – The Government is very positive about the demands put forth by the Maharashtra Mandir Mahasangh with regards to the Temples in the State. Along with that, the authorities have agreed to schedule a formal meeting to discuss and resolve the problem of temples and priests. During the session with the representatives of Maharashtra Mandir Mahasangh at the Nagpur Vidhan Bhavan Hon. Chief Minister of Maharashtra Mr Eknath Shinde assured that the discussion and co-ordination of relevant actions between Maharashtra Mandir Mahasangh and the Government authorities will be overseen by Rural Development Minister Girish Mahajan and Shiv Sena Party Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) Bharatshet Gogawale. Cabinet Minister of Ministry of Soil and Water Conservation (Maharashtra) Sanjay Rathod as well as Shiv Sena Party MLA Pratap Sarnaik were also present for the meeting.
During this session, Mr Sunil Ghanwat, State Co-ordinator of ‘Maharashtra Mandir Mahasangh’ and ‘Devsthan Samanvay Samiti’, Vidharbha’s Mr Anup Jaiswal said that on 2nd and 3rd December 2023, more than 650 Trustees and Priests had attended ‘Maharashtra Mandir-Nyas Parishad’s meeting at Shri Vighnahar Ganapati Temple, Shri Kshetra Ozar (Pune). Many important resolutions were presented and agreed upon in this meeting. Some of the most important and highly sensitive topics covered were; restoration and renovation of ancient and archaic temples to be done; remove all the encroachments on the temples’ land and within temples’ premises. Many pubs, beer bars, liquor shops as well as chicken & mutton sales have increased tenfold in the vicinity of many temples and pilgrimage places. Therefore, to maintain the sanctity of the temples, liquor and meat shops should be banned upto 500 meters from the Temples in all directions. Try to completely free all the pilgrim places of liquor and meat. To solve the problems of the Temple Priests ‘Mumbai Public Trustee Arrangements Act’ should be improved and since many important and chief temples of Maharashtra come and work together towards a common goal under the ‘Maharashtra Mandir Mahasangh’, a proposal has been presented along with other important demands to the Hon. Chief Minister in this meeting to declare ‘Maharashtra Mandir Mahasangh’ as an official organisation.
In relation to the misplacement of the ornaments and jewellery of Shri Tulja Bhavani Mata at Tuljapur Temple, the temple authorities have demanded that instead of the Inspector of Police, a more Senior Officer should investigate the matter. Temple authorities of Pandharpur Vitthal Temple, Shirdi Sai Baba Temple, Shri Mahalakshmi Temple, Shri Siddhivinayak Temple, etc. have all raised questions against governmentalisation of these temples and the issues as well as financial frauds. Owing to this as per the Supreme Court orders there is a demand to free these temples from governmentalisation and the administration of these temples must be handed over to the temple priests and devotees.
Many distinguished guests were present at the meeting. Among these the Temple Trustees from Nagpur were Prakash Tapasvi representing Siddharudh Temple; Dilip Kukade representing Shri Sankatmochan Panchmukhi Hanuman Temple, Adv. Lalit Sagdev representing ancient Shiva Temple, Adv. Shailesh Jaiswal representing Shri Ramchandra Mandir Seva Samiti; Mahadev Damahe representing Hilltop Durga Temple; Kailashkumar Panpalia representing Dhamtari Sansthan; Haridas Nanvatkar representing Shri Ram Mandir Sansthan; Vinit Pakhode representing Shri Pimpaladevi Sansthan and Rajesh Dhande representing Shri Ramana Maruti Temple.