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T.P. Renga Aiyangar and anr. Vs. Sri Swamy Alagia Nambirayar Temple, Tirukurungudi Through Its Dharmakartha Sri Perarulala Ramanuja Jeer Swamigal and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported inAIR1938Mad270
AppellantT.P. Renga Aiyangar and anr.
RespondentSri Swamy Alagia Nambirayar Temple, Tirukurungudi Through Its Dharmakartha Sri Perarulala Ramanuja J
Excerpt:
- - 2. the finding of the learned subordinate judge is that this mantapam has been constructed out of public subscriptions and has been used and enjoyed by every member of the brahmin community in the village of tirukarungudi. he also found that the plaintiffs have failed to establish their exclusive right to the mantapam either in regard to the title set up by them or in regard to the management thereof......the finding of the learned subordinate judge as aforesaid is that every brahmin in the village is entitled to have the use of the mantapam for the performance of sandhya, japam, purificatory and other customary ceremonies. this he is entitled to do without obstruction from anybody on behalf of the temple or on the part of anybody. the brahmins in the said village comprise not only vadagalais but also smarthas, thengalai vaishnavites and brahmins of other persuasion. the terms 'vadagalai', 'tengalai', or 'smartha' represent particular sects or groups of brahmins having tenets of their own. each forms a distinct group by itself. a brahmin of the vadagalai sect as a brahmin will be entitled to use this mantapam for performance of the said sandhya, etc. if anybody offers obstruction to the.....
Judgment:

Venkataramana Rao, J.

1. This second appeal arises out of a suit which relates to a Mantapam on the river bank at Tirukarungudi. It was instituted by the plaintiffs for themselves and as representatives of the Brahmin Vadagalai Sri Vaishnavite community at Tirukarungudi. The ground assigned for the suit was that the temple of Sri Swami Alagia Nambirayar temple represented by the present Dharmakarta, defendant 1, set up title to the property and asserted that no other body or person has got any right or title thereto and that no person can use the said Mantapam without leave or license obtained from defendant 1. The claim asserted on behalf of the plaintiffs was a title to the Mantapam on behalf of the Vadagalai community not merely for the performance of sandhya, japam and other ceremonies but they have the exclusive right and control thereof and no other person can use the Mantapam without their consent.

2. The finding of the learned Subordinate Judge is that this Mantapam has been constructed out of public subscriptions and has been used and enjoyed by every member of the Brahmin community in the village of Tirukarungudi. His finding in substance is that it is a public endowment dedicated to the use of the entire Brahmin community. He also found that the plaintiffs have failed to establish their exclusive right to the Mantapam either in regard to the title set up by them or in regard to the management thereof. He further found that the temple has not established its exclusive right to the possession of this Mantapam. This was also the view of the learned District Munsif who tried the suit. The learned Subordinate Judge however dismissed the suit on the ground that inasmuch as the suit was filed on behalf of only the Vadagalai community, the plaintiffs cannot be given any relief. It seems to me that this view is wrong. The finding of the learned Subordinate Judge as aforesaid is that every Brahmin in the village is entitled to have the use of the Mantapam for the performance of sandhya, japam, purificatory and other customary ceremonies. This he is entitled to do without obstruction from anybody on behalf of the temple or on the part of anybody. The Brahmins in the said village comprise not only Vadagalais but also Smarthas, Thengalai Vaishnavites and Brahmins of other persuasion. The terms 'Vadagalai', 'Tengalai', or 'Smartha' represent particular sects or groups of Brahmins having tenets of their own. Each forms a distinct group by itself. A Brahmin of the Vadagalai sect as a Brahmin will be entitled to use this Mantapam for performance of the said sandhya, etc. If anybody offers obstruction to the said use or asserts any title or right hostile thereto, he is entitled to have his right vindicated in a Court of law. So it is open to the plaintiffs to institute a suit not only on behalf of themselves but on behalf of the Vadagalai sect which in that village comprises not less than 100 households - to institute a representative suit for getting a declaration that not only the plaintiffs but also every member of the Vadagalai community is entitled to the use of the said Mantapam for performance of the said sandhya, japam, etc. There can be no doubt that all the members of the Vadagalai community in regard to this relief have got a common interest and a common grievance against defendant 1 in so far as their rights are denied. No doubt, the Vadagalai community claimed also in addition to this right, a right to the exclusive title and ownership of the Mantapam. The fact that this title was denied and negatived would not preclude the Court from granting the relief which they are entitled to get as members of the Vadagalai community for; the use of the Mantapam for the said purposes.

3. After hearing the learned Counsel on both sides and discussing the matter over with them, the proper order, I think, that should be passed in this case, will be to declare the rights of all the parties and prevent a litigation as far as possible. I therefore propose having this object in view to make the following declarations viz.: (1) that defendant 1, temple, has no title or possession of the suit Mantapam, (2) that as members of the Brahmin, community, the plaintiffs and other Vadagalai Brahmins whom they represent are entitled to use the said Mantapam for performing sandhya, japam, purificatory and other customary ceremonies without any obstruction from defendants, and (3) that the Vadagalai community is not entitled to the exclusive right of the suit Mantapam nor are they entitled to any right of management as set up in the plaint. I direct each party to bear his own costs of this litigation throughout.


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