The former chief minister of Maharashta Prithviraj Chouhan has demanded that the central government should collect gold from various temple trusts of the country against low interest rates in order to tide over the financial crisis being confronted by the government. However, the former chief minister of Maharastra was strongly rebuffed by the BJP leaders, especially its vocal member of parliament Kirit Somaiya who said that the Congress leaders and Prithvi Raj Chouhan must been acting on the advise of their leader Sonia Gandhi. These BJP leaders has strongly criticized his statement saying that what’s the logic of this irresponsible demand when the prime minister Narendra Modi has already allocated Rs.20 Lakh crores to the nation.
Even the Congress leaders have not supported Prithviraj Chouhan’s statement in this regard by not coming to his rescue by issuing any favorable supportive statement. The BJP leaders say that if at all the Gold is to be retrieved by the government against low interest from Hindu temples then religious places of all the religions should also be brought into the ambit of securing gold. Why only Hindu temples, they questioned ? Why is former Maharashtra CM talking about Hindu temples only and not about other religions ? It may be recalled that lots of gold is donated to various temples and other religious shrines of the country by millions of the pilgrims. This donation is used in various philanthropic activities of these temple and other religious trusts.
There are 19 richest temples in the country which include Padmanabhaswamy temple in Kerala, Tirupathi Temple, Saibaba temple in Shridhi, Vaishno Devi Temple, Sidhivinayak Temple, Amritsar’s Golden Temple , Mennakshi Temple, Madurai, Jaganath , Lingaraj Temples, Orissa, Kashi Vishvanath Temple, Varanasi, AmarnathTemple, Badrinath Kedarnath temples, Uttarakhand, Sabrimalla Ayappa Temple, Mahalakshmi Temple, Kohlapur and Swami Narayan Akshardham Temple, Delhi. The monetary and gold collections including jewelleries are in tremendous quantity in majority of these temples, donated by millions of their devotees, especially the rich.
If we believe in various reports the richest temple among all in India is Lord Padmanabhaswamy temple situated in Trivanthpuram in Kerala which possesses wealth of around 20 billion dollars possessing the single golden idol of Lord Vishnu worth 500 crores. The total treasure that was reported to have been unearthed several years ago in the hidden n locked store rooms of the historic temple included antique gold ornaments, sack full of diamonds, golden crowns, golden bows n thousands of antique jewellery. It was believed that the then king several years ago had donated his entire precious gold and diamond jewellery n collections to Lord Padamanabhswamy being the ardent devotee of revered God. Similarly, Tirumali God temple trust, Sai Baba temple, Mata Vaishno Devi temple situated in the South, Shridhi, Maharashtra and J n K Katra etc millions of devotees visit here and donate gold, silver and currency in abundance having infinite reverence to these God deities.
During the last 54 days of Pandemic lockdown the richest temple Tirumala Tirupathi has lost Rs 400 crores which includes gold as well. Indian temples are estimated to have gold reserves worth of one trillion dollars and Padmanabhasamy temple worth of 20 billion dollars’ gold as per various reports. The statement of the former Maharashtra CM Prithvi Raj Chouhan has reported to have created lot of controversy with no Congress leader coming to his rescue by being criticized by several BJP leaders including Kirit Somayya bringing in the Congress president Sonia Gandhi into controversy.