Chennai: Advocate General Vijay Narayan has informed the Madras high court that there is no change in circumstances which warrants further amendments to the Pachaiyappas Trust Scheme.
When a batch of applications and suits filed by various persons for and against the Pachaiyappas Trust came up for hearing before Justice R.Suresh Kumar on Monday, advocate general Vijay Narayan submitted that already the scheme was amended in the year 2008 by a single judge of this court. It was taken up on appeal and a division bench had slightly modified the Scheme. Thereafter the matter went to the Supreme Court and the Supreme Court had dismissed the Special Leave Petition in 2016. Therefore, within 2 years, there is no change in circumstances, which warrants further amendment to the Scheme, he added.
He said there should not be any frequent amendments to the scheme unless there is drastic change in circumstances. The amendments proposed by the applicants are really not necessary. They want to have a super committee over and above the elected committee. In a democratically elected committee, there should not be any supervisory committee and if the elected committee does anything wrong, any person who is interested can approach the court. So there are enough checks and balances, he added.
He said if the court wants, they can have a statutory audit and external audit like in a company and the audit report should be circulated to all the members and now-a-days the members were very vigilant and if they find any financial wrong doing, they will approach the court.
At this juncture, the judge intervened and sought a suggestion from the advocate general as to whether the state government will be prepared to have an ex-officio member in the trust.
Advocate general Vijay Narayan said it was not the question of one trust. There were hundreds of trusts. Though this trust was a big trust, even a small trust has to be treated in the same way. It was difficult for the state government officers to get involved in so many trusts. “However, I will find out the views of the government and inform the court”, he added.
Senior counsel Chitra Sampath, appearing for advocate S.Doraisamy, a former student of Pachaiyappas College, submitted that there was no checks and balances now. The applicant wants the court to appoint an empowering committee to see that the scheme was implemented properly. The resolution of the board of trustees should be in consonance with the object of the trust. Therefore, the applicant asked for checks and balances. As per the scheme, all properties shall vest with the trustees and they shall have the power to mortgage or change the property only for the purpose of obtaining grant from the government. But, the board has not complied with such mandatory requirement of the scheme, she added. Advocate S. Senthil, appearing for Justice K. P. Sivasubramaniam, a retired judge of the Madras high court and one of the applicants, submitted that the applicant sought suitable amendments to the trust scheme to ensure its proper management. Arguing elaborately on the qualification of trustees and voter, he said even a contestant must also be voter. The judge posted to April 23, further hearing of case.