Himachal’s millionaire temples

While many of the popular temples in Himachal are short on infrastructure for regulating movement of pilgrims but the temple trust managements are not short on collections for in 2006 there were at least 13 millionaire shrines in the state.

Topping the list was the Chintpurni temple of Una. The management in 2006 had reported a collection of Rs 20.8 crore in cash and 25 Kg of gold.

The other four famous shaktipeet temples, which include Naina Devi in Bilaspur and Jwalamukhi, Chamunda Devi and Brajeshwari Devi in Kangra had collectively reported a collection of Rs 14 crores. The Baba Balak Nath cave temple shrine on a hilltop at Deoth Sidh in Hamirpur had a reported a collection of Rs 7.2 crore

Other temples making over a million were Hatkoti, Tara devi, Trilokpur and Sankat Mochan. Most of these temples are hundreds of years old. Such heavy donations have led to rising cases of thefts in some shrines.

Photo from HP Tourism

As Editor, Ravinder Makhaik leads a team of media professionals at Hill Post. Spanning a career of over two decades in mass communication, as a Documentary Filmmaker, TV journalist, Print Media journalist and with Online & Social Media, he brings with him a vast experience. He lives in Shimla.

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9 Comments

  1. I would say we file a RTI to find out how each and every rupee was used for the development.

    It would be absurd from government to say that crores were spent on langars(food).

    We can’t and should not take take what is given to us as granted.

    Politicians, you also pray in these temples. Wake up!

    1. says: Rajneesh Sharma

      Mr. Avnish ,

      was looking at older posts..RTI is good i also think about it..but who will bell the CATS single handedly..

      There are so many irregularities… but Himachal doesn’t make much political difference towards national politics…only 4 MPs…so national media doesn’t participate in Himachal affairs and blunders that remain hidden from public eye…National leaders too come occasionally on inaugural affairs for power projects…or summer holidays only..!

      Here too are many Bhrasht , Chor, Ghooskhor , fraudsters..in politics, in government..and NGO sector..but due to lack of media interest..they are enjoying and reaping harvests without being questioned aggressively..

      I am sure, once a scandal is unearthed by RTI ways..a series of scandals will get traced…a criminal tries to involve other criminals who enjoyed the party together but beyond trap..

      1. says: Anil Chandel

        Rajneesh Ji,

        I don’t care about the national politics especially when Himachal’s own house is in gross disorder. Lets not concentrate on the 4 MPs but on dozens of MLAs that make up Himachal’s governance and the administration that has most impact on what goes on inside Himachal.

        Avnish has a point on how such collections are utilized? I am not and don’t know, if these temple trusts are state bodies and are subject to RTI (pardon my ignorance on this).

        If they do, We can pick one such shrine at a time, once that hits the news I am sure others will take steps to either cover up the irregularities or straighten their part of the house.

        Which one to pick for such a query is up for debate.

        1. says: Rajneesh Sharma

          Dear Anil,

          ok but the question is again..who will bell the cats? chor chor mausere bhai..all fraudsters in nexus with other ones..unless one is caught ..that sets a terrible example..but even politicians will try to save culprits out of influence over vote banks..

          Fraud priests n politicians…mafia of civilizations for past thousands of years..both need each other to exploit public.

  2. says: Sheetal Mohan Sharma

    I totally agree with Avinash. Its time to shake up the system and wake up the sleeping politicians from their dreams…

  3. says: vijay

    After the state taking control over all these temples, the officials in-charge at the tehsil/divisional level is being benefited the most. They have more perquisites now by becoming temple officers/in charge supplementing the comforts being derived from government for vehicles, phones, domestic help etc. Everyone knows that, but all are silent spectators as this is religious issue and affecting worshippers who are unorganized.

    Government officials can now arrange an easy darshan for all VIPs and built some personal relations in return. They have special accommodation where they can take rest and bhandara can be arranged for this sophisticated class. Temples used to be the only places where everyone was equal.

    I was shocked to see such a VIP from judiciary a few months back at Taradevi temple where he was performing PUJA very calmly and people mainly women and children were stranded in queue for about 20 minutes while it was raining.

    I think the power, ego and officialdom is spoiling the whole system now, as the society’s aspirations for getting such positions are only based on such nuisance power. How can we think of work culture and efforts towards public safety in this scenario but we can easily have another enquiry report.
    Devbhoomi is now moving fastly towards the nuisance bhumi

  4. General population of the area is very poor. There should be free hospital with latest technical know hows, free eduction including books and food till 12th, sufficient dring water to be arranged from Pongdam, road to be widen(bye pass Bharwain to Talwara in Chintpurni temple is one of the worst portion. This portion needs immediate attention.

    When sufficient funds available a direct bridge from Busstand to temple and back is suggested. This will curb the crowd. and quick darshan s for all.

    Fencing in the temple is to much, it should be avoided.

    Old hertage like gate with silver plates, Shher, two old statues on the temple should be perseved and maintenance done daily without fail.

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