Madras High Court takes serious view of fake temple websites – The Hindu

Chennai News

Hearing a public interest litigation petition that complained about a number of fake websites being operated in the names of famous temples in the State, the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court on Thursday sought response from the Centre and the State.

A Division Bench of Justices R. Mahadevan and J. Sathya Narayana Prasad took a serious view of the matter and sought response from authorities on the petition filed by A.R. Subramanian of Ramanathapuram, who said necessary action should be initiated against those who were operating such fake websites.

The petitioner said numerous websites had been created in the names of famous temples and donations were sought from devotees and public. The websites claimed to do various services and pujas without any validity. They claimed to represent the deities or the temples.

These websites had no right to make such claims as they had not been authorised by anyone to collect funds or donations in the names of the temples. It was not known where these donations went and who benefitted by these donations. The devotees were led to believe that they were donating to the deities or the temples. However, in reality these funds were diverted and stolen by those persons who were running these websites, the petitioner said.

The presence of such illegal websites in the digital space was creating great confusion among the devotees who were led to the illegal sites and were cheated. The Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department should take immediate action to close these websites. The authorities should take action against those who ran these websites and recover the money which they had collected by cheating the devotees, he said. The court adjourned the hearing in the case till October 26.