Cabinet Sub Committee (CSC) constituted to review the report submitted by the H.P. High Power Committee for Administration of Temples held its third meeting under the chairmanship of Ravinder Singh Ravi. Minister said that in future ‘Vikrami Samvat Year’ would be inscribed on all the foundation and inauguration stones in the state and a proposal to this effect would be submitted to the Cabinet for its approval at the earliest. He said that ‘Vikrami Samvat Year’ epitomises the essence of Indian Culture and was associated with the birth of Lord Ram and with first Chaitra Navratra the day on which Hindu New Year begins.

He said that state government will issue proper guidelines so that uniform ‘Puja’ could be performed at the time of inauguration or laying foundation stones of various developmental activities in the state. Training programmes would be organised for priests in the state, he added.

Cabinet Sub Committee also agreed in principle for Small Temple Adoption Scheme which envisages that temples which are already under the control of state government would provide money to the small temples located in their vicinity so that public utilities could be constructed and these small temples can be beautified so as to attract more number of tourists. Committee had submitted a detailed report regarding amendment of section 29 of Scheduled Temples taken over by the Government under provisions of H.P. Hindu Public Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowment Act 1984.

Health Minister, Dr. Rajeev Bindal and Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Minister Jai Ram Thakur, members of the subcommittee also gave valuable suggestions in the meeting.

Principal Secretary Manisha Nanda Art, Language and Culture and Tourism and Member Secretary of the CSC welcomed the chairman of the subcommittee and detailed about the schemes and steps taken by the department for maintaining the sanctity of the temples. Dr. Prem Sharma, Director, Art, Language and Culture and Prem Prasad Pandit, OSD (Temples) and Deputy Secretary, LAC also attended the meeting.

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