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Recent Appointment Of Non-Brahmins As Priests In Government Temples Of Tamil Nadu – A Long Fought Ba

Recent Appointment Of Non-Brahmins As Priests In Government Temples Of Tamil Nadu – A Long Fought Battle Towards Reinforcement Of Social Justice

Jai Pradha T Ma, Faculty of Law, University of Delhi


This article brings out the social conditions existed during Ancient tamilaham and how the caste based inequalities emerged through bakthi movement and patronization received by the preists during historic times. The legislative and legal battles over appointments to non-brahmins as priests was started by the Justice Party in Tamil Nadu in the year 1925 through enactment of the Madras Act whereby they consolidated laws for the better administration and governance of the Hindu temple situated in the Province. Thereafter subsequent laws and amendments were passed significant among them were the Tamil Nadu Hindu Religious institutions and Endowments (Amendment) Act 1959 whereby hereditary posts of Priests were abolished and maintained its legal sanctity as it regulated only a secular aspect and not an Essential religious practice ( in re Seshammal case). Any person irrespective of their caste, creed or race can be appointed as Priests provided they are qualified with knowledge of mantras, rituals and practices of respective temples was reiterated in re Adithayan case and G.O. NO. 118 of Tamil Nadu where traditional lineage and custom/usage was done away with. This was challenged in re Adi Saivachariya nala sangam case where the Apex court harmonized legal tangle by pronouncing that it should be according to agamas as well as constitutional mandate. Consequently there were 58 non-brahmin priests appointments in Tamil Nadu which reinforces the social justice and other constitutional ideals.


Indian Journal of Law and Legal Research

Abbreviation: IJLLR

ISSN: 2582-8878


Accessibility: Open Access

License: Creative Commons 4.0

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​All research articles published in The Indian Journal of Law and Legal Research are fully open access. i.e. immediately freely available to read, download and share. Articles are published under the terms of a Creative Commons license which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the authors. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of the IJLLR or its members. The designations employed in this publication and the presentation of material therein do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the IJLLR.

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