Erode Hindu Resistance Victorious: Temple land in CSI clutches to be retrieved

published on April 29, 2012

A recent resolution of Erode municipal corporation seeks to retrieve a huge piece of Hindu temple land from the illegal clutches of the Church of South India (CSI) in view of the snowballing Hindu resistance in the town. The land in question belongs to devi periya maariyamman temple, centre of devotion for the entire district. First of all, a unique Bandh that was total and without any untoward incidents was held on May 28, 2010. The Bandh call was given by a struggle group ‘Movement for Retrieving Periya Mariyamman Temple Land’ comprising devotees of a Kali temple centrally located in the bustling commercial town.

The demands of the Movement include retrieval of 12.56 acres of temple land that Church of South India (CSI) possesses illegally. The land was snatched from Hindus and handed over by Britishers to London Mission. More recently, the Highways Department started work on a flyover running above the centuries old temple, adding insult to injury. The ‘Movement for Retrieving Periya Mariyamman Temple Land’ submitted a memorandum to the Mayor of Erode Municipal Corporation requesting to drop the flyover menace. 30 Ward Councillors of various parties – accounting for three-fourth of the Council strength – had signed the memorandum.

Based on this Memorandum, the Highways Department has stopped the work. Lately, during the temple celebrations in March 2012, the town witnessed a high Hindu wave – around 5,000 women participating in the paal kudam (Milk Pot) procession. Usually only 300-400 women used to participate.  ‘Movement for Retrieving Periya Mariyamman Temple Land’ also submitted individual letters to all the 60 councillors of the district for retrieval of temple land.  The photocopies of the documents obtained through RTI Act were also enclosed. Sensing the mood of the Hindus, the Municipal Corporation passed a resolution that the land that the  CSI possessed illegally should be retrieved. It is also resolved that initially unfinished 80 feet road be completed to ease the traffic snarl; the road will cut through the present  CSI premises.

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