Kerala HC Orders Appointment of New Devaswom Commissioner

Travancore Devaswom Board.

The Kerala High Court has directed the appointment of CV Prakash, Additional Secretary in the State’s Home Department, as the new Devaswom Commissioner of the Travancore Devaswom Board. This decision was made by a bench comprising Justices Anil K. Narendran and Harisankar V. Menon.

The court noted that the position of Devaswom Commissioner was vacant and ordered that Prakash be appointed to the role on deputation until May 18, 2025. The Court stated, “Among the persons included in the panel, we find that Sri. C.V. Prakash, Additional Secretary to Government, Home Department, who had experience in the Vigilance Department for about four years as Under Secretary and Deputy Secretary and experience in the Home Department for about three years as Joint Secretary and Additional Secretary, can be appointed as the Devaswom Commissioner, Travancore Devaswom Board, on deputation basis, till 18.05.2025, and shall also act as the Member Secretary of the High Power Committee for Implementation of Sabarimala Master Plan.”

The Court further directed the Travancore Devaswom Board to issue formal orders within two weeks to expedite the appointment. This order was issued in a suo motu case concerning the Travancore Devaswom Board and Cochin Devaswom Board, initiated based on a judgment dated March 25, 2024. This judgment addressed various administrative issues, including the implementation of the Sabarimala Master Plan and the appointment of key officials in the Devaswom Boards.

The March 25 judgment had also highlighted significant irregularities and embezzlements within the administration of the Devaswom Boards. In its latest order, the Court emphasized that any future orders by the Travancore Devaswom Board regarding the appointment or extension of the term of the Devaswom Commissioner must receive the Court’s prior approval. The matter is scheduled to be heard next on July 10, 2024.

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