The Tamil Nadu Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HRCE) Department has set up a special committee including officials from the State Revenue and Land Administration Department to gather details of various temple lands and properties.
Tamil daily Dinamalar reported that HRCE Department commissioner R Jaya’s orders come close on the heels of Madurai bench of the Madras High Court ordering the department to file details of temple lands in the state. According to reports, at least 25,000 hectares of temple lands have been illegally sold or usurped in the last couple of decades.
Some 36,500 temples, 56 religious mutts and 58 temples under these mutts are under the control of the HRCE Department.
The special team will get details based on old land records available with gram panchayats. It will also focus on the latest occupants of the temple lands and properties. Illegal transfer of temple lands will be reversed. At the district level, deputy commissioner of the Revenue Department, tehsildars and joint commissioners of HRCE Department will be involved in restoration of temple properties and lands, reported the daily.
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