A priest who had moved the Delhi High Court seeking to debar his two sisters from performing pooja at Sri Kalkaji temple here and claiming a share in the offerings, has agreed to a temporary arrangement to pay Rs 6 lakh each to his sisters from the offerings collected.
The priest agreed to pay the money from the offerings collected during the ‘pooja sewa’ from February 7 to March 7.
Earlier, a local court had allowed the sisters’ plea to perform pooja in the temple and to realise the income from offerings for the 30 days period.
This was challenged by the priest through advocate BL Wali, who said that as per customs prevalent from time immemorial, pooja and sewa at the temple are being performed by the male lineal descendants and not by married daughters.
The priest had contended that after marriage, his sister did not remain members of their father’s family, their ‘gotra’ has changed and they belonged to the family of their respective husbands.
Justice JR Midha on Friday agreed to the interim arrangement between the priest and his sisters but expressed displeasure at the way the temple was managing the rush of people.
“There is only a fraction of a second for a person to view the deity. Within that time, there should be no obstruction between devotees and God. But here, the fraction of a second is not unobstructed. I go to that temple too,” the judge said.
“This court is of the view that the darshan of the deity to the devotees should be managed in a systematic manner as is being done in other temples,” the judge remarked adding, “In Vaishno Devi shrine, two single person lines are permitted and each devote is permitted an unobstructed darshan”.
The court told the priest and the counsel to take cue from Jhandewalan temple, which have separate lines from different directions and one unobstructed darshan from a distance available to the devotees.
As the arrangement of darshan is looked after by Kalkaji police station, the court directed the SHO, along with the counsel appearing for the priest, to visit Jhandewalan temple to suggest “systematic” darshan to the devotees.