Kathmandu: The government has set up a
top panel to make the functioning of Nepal`s world famous
Pashupatinath Temple more transparent, following a Supreme
Court directive to streamline the management of the 5th
century Hindu shrine.
Nepal`s Ministry of Culture has formed a 10-member
committee, with its Secretary as member-secretary, to make
suggestions for streamlining the functioning of the temple,
including greater transparency in the management of its
The caretaker government`s decision comes in the wake
of a key Supreme Court directive to ensure transparency in the
functioning of the temple, said myrepublica, the website of
Republica newspaper on Tuesday.
The committee has been directed to make
recommendations to ensure proper management of worship at the
temple, income received from religious trusts (Guthis) and the
salary as well as allowances of the head priest and other
priests, the report said.
The committee has also been asked to make suggestions
for developing necessary infrastructure and to highlight its
The panel will also make recommendations for bringing
necessary amendment to the rules governing the management of
The top panel includes Kedar Nath Acharya, Shree Hari
Aryal, Sharad Kumar Bhattarai, Ram Prasad Dahal, Ananta Ram
Bhattarai, Shiva Sharan Rajbhandari, Swami Ramananda Giri,
Chetonath Gautam and Basanta Kumar Chaudhary as members.
The tempel had been the centre of a row when the
Prachanda-led Maoist coalition government in 2008 sacked the
chief priest and other Brahmins from South India, and
appointed Nepalese priests to replace them.
It had triggered widespread protests across the
country as it was a break with centuries-old tradition where
Brahmins from South India have led the worship at one of the
holiest Hindu shrine.
Later, Nepal`s Supreme Court had stayed the government
regulation aimed at ending the 300-year old monopoly of Indian
priests at the famed Pashupatinath.
Two priests -- Girish Bhatt and Raghavendra Bhatt
belonging to Karnataka -- were severely thrashed and their
clothes and sacred thread cut by dozens of Maoists in
September 2008. The priests were badly injured in the attack,
which had evoked concern and sharp reaction from the Indian
Located on the banks of the Bagmati river,
Pashupatinath is regarded as the most sacred temple of Shiva
(Pashupati) and the oldest Hindu shrine in Nepal.
The fifth century temple is also listed in UNESCO
World Cultural Heritage Site list.