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Building Temple Is Land-Grab Tactic: Gujarat HC

| Updated: March 1, 2024 13:54

Locals have appealed against temple demolition to make way for public road

In a significant development, the Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court on Thursday asserted that “emotional blackmail” and land grabbing” are involved at times in temple construction. 

Chief Justice Sunita Agarwal was commenting on an appeal by local residents of Chandlodia against the demolition of a temple. The court has granted interim protection against the demolition. The next hearing on the matter has been scheduled for March 14.

“This is how people emotionally blackmail everyone”. “Building a temple is another way of grabbing public land in India,” she observed. 

“I must say that this is how you emotionally blackmail everyone. You encroach upon public property. And this is happening everywhere,” the Chief Justice said. She added that the land on which the temple is built does not belong to the appellants. 

“You put up some signs outside the house and make it a temple. This is another way of land grabbing in India…,” she said. 

The temple was to be demolished to make way for a public road under a town planning scheme. Ninety-three households in Chandlodia have appealed against the demolition. 

After a single judge dismissed their plea, the appellants approached a division bench. Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) had assured the residents that no houses would be demolished. However, the appellants are seeking to protect the temple They are citing emotional attachment as it has been built with contributions from the entire community. 

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