‘Ban on mobile phones to be implemented in two weeks’
The Madras High Court on Tuesday directed Madurai Corporation to find out all those who had constructed buildings around the Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple in violation of the height restrictions, so that the court could include them as respondents to a public interest litigation petition.
A Division Bench of Justices N. Kirubakaran and R. Tharani also restrained the Corporation from granting approval for any new building to be constructed in violation of the height restrictions and directed it to keep a check on violations.
The order was passed on a public interest litigation petition related to the temple.
During a hearing, held through video-conferencing, on the case filed in the Madurai Bench of the High Court, the judges recorded the submission of the petitioner’s advocate that the Corporation officials had not acted against any person who had constructed buildings beyond the height of nine metres within a radius of one km from the temple.
When the Corporation counsel R. Murali refuted the allegation and challenged the advocates to provide the details of the violators, it irked Mr. Justice Kirubakaran so much so that he said: “If the officials cannot see the violations and if they are blind, let them resign and go. Petitioner can only bring the violations to their notice.”
Earlier, Special Government Pleader VR. Shanmuganathan told the court that the temple management had purchased about 1,000 vaults to store mobile phones of devotees and that a ban on carrying mobile phones inside the temple would be enforced within two weeks after making announcements through newspapers.
He also said two watchtowers were being established. Providing other details, he said 67 CCTV cameras and 143 fire extinguishers had been installed inside the temple.
Further, five baggage scanners had been provided to scan the bags carried by the devotees and 131 police personnel were deputed at a time at eight different spots on the temple campus.
After directing him to obtain instructions from the officials concerned on purchasing high-end fire fighting equipment, the judges adjourned further hearing on the case by two weeks.