P M BRAMADATHAN NAMBOORIPAD Vs. COCHIN DEVASWOM BOARD
HIGH COURT OF KERALA
P. M. BRAMADATHAN NAMBOORIPAD
COCHIN DEVASWOM BOARD
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(1.) This suit relates to the Kaipancheri Vishnu Temple situated in the Nedumpura Village, a village in the Cochin State portion of the Travancore - Cochin State. The plaintiff is the karnavan of the Pazhur Mana, Panayalikara, to which according to him the temple and its properties were entrusted in 1041 M.E. in pursuance of a Theettooram of His Highness the Maharaja of Cochin.
(2.) The defendant is the Cochin Devaswom Board, Trichur and the immediate cause of the suit is the decision of the Board under S. 114 of the Travancore - Cochin Hindu Religious Institutions Act, 1950, to the effect that the temple is an institution as defined in Part II of that Act. After some discussion at the Bar the issues for decision as far as this court is concerned were settled as follows:-
1. Does the Travancore - Cochin Hindu Religious Institutions Act, 1950, offend Art. 14 of the Constitution
2. Is the Devaswom Board a local or other authority within the meaning of Art.12 of the Constitution
3. Is the right of the plaintiff to be an Ooralan Property within the meaning of Art.19(1)(f) of the Constitution
4. Do S.63 and 64 of the Act offend Arts. 14, 15(1), 19(1)(f) & (g) and 26 of the Constitution
5. Does S. 66(vi) of the Act offend Arts. 19, 26 and 254 of the Constitution
6. If either S. 63 or S. 66(vi) of the Act is ultra vires of the Constitution, will that invalidate the entire Act or the constitution of the present Devaswom Board
7. Does S. 61(6) of the Act offend Art. 14 of the Constitution in view of S. 2(b) of the Act which exempts institutions belonging to and under the sole management of a single family
8, Are S.79, 81, 83, 84 and 86 ultra vires of the Constitution or alternatively will exercise of supervision by the Board before an enquiry and a finding of proved mismanagement as provided in S. 36 of the Act offend Art. 14 of the Constitution
9. Does S. 114 of the Act offend Arts. 14 and 19 of the Constitution Are the notification and order of the Board dated 12.1.1951 invalid and inoperative
(3.) Issue No. 1. Does the Travancore - Cochin Hindu Religious Institutions Act, 1950, offend Art. 14 of the Constitution
This issue relates to the validity of the Act as a whole and not of any specific section or sections of the Act. The contention is that it singles out the followers of the Hindu faith for special control and restrictions and thus violates Art. 14 of the Constitution which provides that :-
The State shall not deny to any person equality before the law or the equal protection of the laws within the territory of India.;
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