Indian royal family keep control of one of world’s richest temples, court rules
New Delhi: India’s Supreme Court on Monday upheld the right of a former royal dynasty to run the Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple, one of the world’s richest places of worship, after the state government tried to take it over when the family patriarch died. When one of the vaults of the towering centuries-old Hindu temple in Thiruvananthanpuram in Kerala state was opened in 2011, it was found to hold diamonds by the sackful along with tonnes of gold coins and jewellery - a hoard estimated at over US$20 billion $FJ 43.20bn).
The Kerala High Court had ruled that year, after public interest petitions, that the Travancore family must give up its custodianship of the temple following the death of its head, Sree Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, the last ruling Maharaja of Travancore, in 1991. But on Monday, the Supreme Court reversed that decision.
Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple.