(1) The committee of management of a notified institution may with the approval of the Commissioner appoint one or more archakas to each temple belonging to the institution.
(2) Where more than one Archaka is appointed the senior among them shall perform as the Pradhana Archaka. The Pradhana Archaka wherever appointed, and the archakas, shall perform such duties as the Committee of Management may specify.
(3) Without prejudice to the power of the State Government to prescribe a common pattern for each category of temples, the number of archakas appointed to the temple shall be in keeping with the practice obtaining in the temple immediately before the commencement of this Act.
Section 10 - Qualifications for Archakas
(1) No person shall be appointed to be a Archaka unless he has passed atleast a certificate course (Wara) in the Agama in the tradition of the temple, from any recognised Sanskruta Patashala or any other institution as the State Government may by notification in the official gazette specify, or has performed as archaka in the tradition of the temple for at least three years.
(2) No Archaka who on the date of commencement of this Act is performing in any temple without having the requisite qualification stipulated in this section shall be disqualified, if he has attained the age of forty years.
(3) An Agamika or tanthri wherever appointed to perform poojas in a temple on special occasions shall continue to perform such functions as the Committee of management may specify and shall be governed by such conditions of service as may be prescribed.
Provided that no person shall after the commencement of this Act be appointed to perform as an Agamika or Tanthri unless he has passed the Pravina course in the Agama, from any samskruta patashala or other institutions imparting education in the tradition.
Section 11 - Archakas to be on the Committee of Management
(1) The Archaka of the temple, and if there are more Archakas than one, the Pradhana Archaka shall be an ex-officio member on the committee of management of the temple, and his opinion on any question of custom or tradition of the temple may be considered by the committee resolving disputes if any about the custom or tradition of the temple.
(2) Where in any temple an Agamika or Tanthri is performing special pooja or ritual, the committee of management shall consult him on any question of ritual, custom or tradition to be followed in the temple. The Committee of management may, if necessary, consult an Agamika or Tanthri of any other temple in the tradition, on such question.
Section 12 - Emoluments and Service Conditions of Archakas
(1) The State Government may by rules regulate the emoluments, hours of work and other conditions of service of the archakas. Such rules may provide for appointment and termination of employment, leave and working hours, rotation of work, terminal benefits, misconduct and disciplinary action.
(2) The emoluments and other monitory benefits payable to archakas shall be prescribed taking into account the income of the temple and for this purpose the State Government may classify the temples into two or more categories based on their resources.
(3) In determining the emoluments payable to archakas in all category of temples, the State Government shall take into account;
(i) entitlement of the Archakas to appropriate the thattekasu and other offerings by the devotees at the time of pooja or other seva;
(ii) Any amount receivable by the archaka as a percentage of the fees fixed by the committee of management for the various sevas offered at the temples.
(iii) Avocation other than the temple service which the archakas may be free to undertake during the term of employment.
(iv) Timing if any specified by the committee of management or the State Government, to keep the temple open to public for performing poojas or other sevas, in a day.
(v) Accommodation and other benefits in kind offered by the committee of management for the residence and livelihood of the archakas.
(4) The emoluments so determined shall be not less than the minimum rate and not more than the maximum rate as may be prescribed in the rules in keeping with the class of the temple.
Explanation: For the purpose of this section the word archaka shall include an Agamika, a Tanthri or a Pradhana Archaka wherever appointed.
Section 13 - Register of Temple servants
As soon as may be after the commencement of this Act, the Commissioner shall cause to be maintained in each temple a register of temple servants, which shall contain the name, parentage, date of birth, date of joining service, qualification and experience, address and such other particulars as may be prescribed in respect of such temple servants.
Section 14 - Pattern of Temple Servants to be determined by rules
The State Government may in consultation with the committee of management make rules prescribing a pattern of temple servants for any class of temples, so however that the existing strength in any temple, immediately before the commencement of this Act, is not altered except by way of superannuation or dismissal for misconduct.
Section 15 - Salary and Service Conditions of Temple servants
(1) The salary and service conditions of temple servants shall be as prescribed by the State Government. Such rules may provide for appointment and termination of employment, pay or other terminal benefits, leave and working hours, misconduct and disciplinary action.
(2) For the purpose of determining salaries payable to the temple servants the State Government shall follow the same classification of temples as under sub-section (2) of section 12.
(3) Provisions of sub-section (3) of section 12 shall apply mutatis-mutandis for determining the salaries payable to temple servants.
Section 16 - Mis-conduct and Penalty
(1) The Committee of management shall be competent to initiate action and hold enquiry for misconduct, either suo-moto or on complaint received against an archaka, including an Agamika, Tanthri or Pradhana Archaka and against the temple servants and to impose appropriate penalty for proven misconduct. No order imposing any penalty under this section shall be made except after giving such person a reasonable opportunity of being heard against the charge.
(2) An appeal shall lie to the Commissioner against every order imposing penalty under this section. Such appeal shall be made within thirty days from the date of the order imposing the penalty.