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Dakshina Kannada (DK) district administration has made it mandatory for all temples that conduct weddings to first get a requisition letter from the parents’ of the prospective bride and groom.Speaking to Bangalore Mirror on the sidelines of the review meeting of all temples in the district under the endowment department, on Tuesday, additional deputy commissioner Kumar said that recently an incident was reported at a temple where the parents of the girl claimed that the girl was forced into marriage by the groom and his family.

They were totally unaware about the marriage. “A complaint is before the police and we are investigating the case. We realised that it was only the groom’s family who had booked the temple hall,” he said.

“In order to prevent such incidents in the future as well as to control child marriage, we have made it mandatory for all temples under the endowment department to collect a requisition letter from the parents of the boy and the girl who are expected to get married. The parties are also expected to submit age proof certificates.”

Cataloguing is under progress

The district administration has made it mandatory for all temples, especially ‘A’ category temples, to complete the process of photo cataloguing of all the jewellery and valuables. Dakshina Kannada district has about 500 temples of which 40 are under the ‘A’ category (that earns an annual income above Rs 25 lakh), 25 are under the ‘B’ category (annual income of above Rs 5 lakh, but within Rs 25 lakh) and 435 are under ‘C’ category. Out of the 40 temples, 26 have already submitted their catalogues.

All temples have been asked to complete their auditing by Aug 31. Meanwhile, the process of appointing managing committees to temples is also in progress.

Deputy commissioner AB Ibrahim, at the review meet on Tuesday, directed temple committees to complete valuation of gold with the help of appraisers of nationalised banks. Several issues such as installation of CCTV surveillance systems and lightening arrestors were discussed.

SP’s suggestions

DK superintendent of police Bhushan Gulabrao Borase asked temples to consider depositing gold ornaments in bank lockers if they are being used only during festivals. He suggested construction of strong rooms in temple premises with adequate security measures.

Noting some of the common mistakes made at the time of installation of burglar alarms, SP said often robbers do have an electricians in their team and hence they cut the power supply. It is important to have a battery to sustain the alarm for eight hours. The alarm should be heard for at least half a kilometre. Also, a maximum of two people should know about the alarm. While installing CC cameras it is important to keep principles of photography in mind. The cameras should be a combination of regular and dummy cameras. It is important to empty hundis once in 15 days as well as install a board informing that hundis are cleared regularly.

Regarding the government’s request of linking CCTV footages of the temples with the police department, Kumar said, “We will discuss the issue with the SP. A separate control room should be set up,” he said.

Kukke shops auction

The lease of two shops at the cash-rich Kukke Sri Subrahmanya Temple is now under district administration’s scanner. A shop at Rathabeedi in Kukke temple premises was leased for Rs 72.77 lakh per annum and another near Adi Subrah-manya shrine was given for Rs 65.67 lakh for 2015-16. Though the district administration was insisting on auction of shops through notification for 2016-17, the process was bypassed and the lease agreements have been renewed with a marginal increase of 10 per cent. It is a loss to the temple as the shops would fetch more amounts if they were handed over through public auction.

The district has sought directions from the state to auction the shops.