Kochi: In a major controvery, Devaswom minister Kadakampally Surendran has lashed out at the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) for “secretly” taking a major decision to change official name of the Sabarimala Temple, saying the Board has no powers to make the “illegal” move. “I don’t think the Board is legally empowered to change the official name on its own without consulting the ministry. The board making the decision on own terms over a month back and then keeping the move secret amounts to violation of the law,” the minister said.
Though various meets such as festival preparedness evaluation were held, including that directly with TDB President Prayar Gopalakrishnan, the latter failed to inform the government or consult with the concerned minister while taking the vital decision, he lashed out. The TDB in an internal meet held on October 5 had issued an order to change the official name of Sabarimala Temple in all its record ‘Sri Dharmasastha Temple’ to ‘Sabarimala Sri Ayyappa Swamy temple’. The minister further said that he had contacted the Sabarimala Tantri and the present generation of Pandalam Palace.
“They all are saying they were kept in the dark while taking such a decision. The ministry will seek explanation of the TDB on the matter urgently,” he said in his Facebook post. Meanwhile, TDB President Prayar Gopalakrishnan made a U-turn from his earlier stance following the minister’s public outburst and said the government can correct the Board’s move if it’s wrong. Earlier he had said the Board has the power to make the decision and there is no need to consult with the government. “We’re yet to implement the decision. The government can overturn the same by cancelling the decision,” he said.