‘No Jagran at Kalkaji Mandir Without Permission’: Delhi HC

Kalkaji Mandir

The Delhi High Court has ordered that no “jagran” or similar event may be held in the Kalkaji mandir without its permission, following the recent death of a 45-year-old woman in an incident where a stage collapsed during a religious function.

A single bench of Justice Prathiba M Singh remarked that the temple is under the complete management and control of an administrator appointed by the high court. The premises are designated for public use, and no individual or entity can assert exclusive control over any part of it.

“No jagran shall be held, or any similar events permitted, in the Kalkaji mandir. If any organization wishes to organize such a religious program, they must approach the court for permission through an application,” the court order stated.

The court took into consideration the “unfortunate jagran incident” that occurred between January 27 and 28 and sought a status report on the investigation to be conducted promptly.

The event had been organized without authorization from the administrator. The woman’s death and the injury of 17 others prompted the court to order an expeditious investigation and submit a status report identifying those responsible.

The court emphasized that various societies claiming operation from the Kalkaji mandir premises under the temple’s name cannot hold programs without the administrator’s permission.

“The entire management, control, and administration of Shri Kalkaji Mandir must be under the supervision of the appointed administrator and not under the control of any other individual, society, or entity,” the court stated.

The judge also directed the administrator to take steps to revive the Shri Kalkaji Mandir Prabandhak Sudhar Committee, which could recruit volunteers for crowd management, ensuring proper crowd control at the temple premises.

The court’s order stemmed from a series of petitions addressing civic amenities and cleanliness in and around the Kalkaji temple complex.

In 2021, Justice Singh appointed retired high court judge J R Midha as the temple’s administrator to perform various functions related to the religious site. The court also directed the removal of encroachments and unauthorized occupants and appointed architect Goonmeet Singh Chauhan to submit a redevelopment plan for the temple and its surrounding complex.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte