Temple treasure: Erstwhile queen favours status quo

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Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple in Kerala
Udupi (Karnataka), Jul 9: Erstwhile Queen of Travancore, Rani Gowri Lakshmibai, today (Jul 9) said the properties and assets of Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple, where a treasure trove has been unearthed, do not belong to anyone and a status quo should be maintained.

"It neither belongs to the Royal family, devotees nor Government. Government should not interfere in the properties and assets of the temple. The status quo should be maintained and the properties should be retained in the vaults of the temple," she told reporters after offering prayers at the famous Krishna temple here.

The royal family is not claiming that the properties and assets belong to them, she said, adding the government should appoint police or commandos to safeguard the temple vaults.

Lakshmivaratheertha Swami of Shiroor Paryaya Math said the government should not confiscate the assets of the temple.

Earlier, the Rani, who arrived from Thiruvananthapuram this morning, offered special pooja at the Krishna Temple.

Other members of the royal family visited Mookambika Temple in Kollur, Sharadambe in Sringeri and Sri Krishna Temple in Guruvayoor to offer special poojas.

The temple shot into the limelight with the unearthing of a stunning range of articles, comprising gold ornaments, and gold platters and lamps from its cellars during an inventory by a Supreme Court appointed committee.

The apex court had restrained the panel from opening some vaults. The treasures found from cellars of the temple are estimated to be around Rs one lakh crore.

The royal family, which is the trustee of the ancient temple, has challenged the Kerala government's decision to take over the administration of the temple which was earlier upheld by the Kerala High Court.

PTI

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