Even before the year 1925, measures were taken for the efficient administration and for the supervision of administrative works of the Hindu Religious Charitable Institutions. The Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Board was established in the year 1925. Hindu temples, Charitable Endowments and Holy Mutts were supervised by the Board. The Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Board was abolished in 1951, paving the way for functioning as a Government Department. The Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Act that was in force from 1951 encountered certain difficulties during implementation. In order to rectify these and integrate various amendments, the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Act 22/1959 was enacted in the year 1959. This Act came into force from 01.01.1960. The Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Act 1959 underwent amendments suitable for the needs from time to time. Through this Act, it was enabled to supervise the temples and charitable endowments by widening the administration and defining the jurisdiction of powers of the Commissioner and the Subordinate Officers.
Under the Tamil Nadu Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Act 1959 (amended Act 39/1996,) an officer in the cadre of the Indian Administrative Service is appointed and functions as the Commissioner of Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department. The Commissioner is heading the general administration and all activities of the Department. There are totally 2409 sanctioned posts which include the posts of the Commissioner, Officers, sub-ordinate Officers, Executive Officers, Officers on deputation, Office Assistants, Drivers, Watchmen and Scavengers in the administration of this department. At present there are 1336 employees working in this department. At the Headquarters the following Officers are assisting the Commissioner.
|S.No||Cadre||No. of Officers||Department|
|1||Special Officers (Temple Lands) /(District Revenue Officer cadre )||2||Revenue Department|
|2||Superintending Engineer||1||Highways Department/ Public Works Department|
|3||Executive Engineer||1||Highways Department/ Public Works Department|
|4||Assistant Divisional Engineer||1||Highways Department/ Public Works Department|
|5||Assistant Engineer||2||Highways Department/ Public Works Department|
|6||Assistant Engineer (Electrical)||1||Electricity Department|
|7||Senior Draughting Officer||1||Highways Department/Public Works Department|
|8||Junior Draughtsman||2||Highways Department/Public Works Department|
|9||Draughtsman||2||Highways Department/Public Works Department|
|10||Senior Accounts Officer||1||Treasuries Department|
|11||Assistant Accounts Officer||1||Treasuries Department|
|12||Chief Audit Officer||1||Finance Department, (Deputy Secretary cadre)|
The above mentioned Officers are assisting the Commissioner rendering support in the administration of the Head Office and the Subordinate Offices, the establishment of employees, the management and the administration of temples, the establishment of temple employees, renovations, court cases, auditing, etc.
For the administrative convenience, the administration of this Department has been divided into 11 regions and 28 divisions. Each region is administered by a Joint Commissioner and each division is administered by an Assistant Commissioner. The details are as below:
|1||Joint Commissioner, Chennai||1. Assistant Commissioner,Chennai||Chennai District|
|2||Joint Commissioner, Vellore||2. Assistant Commissioner, Thiruvallur||Thiruvallur District|
|3. Assistant Commissioner, Kancheepuram||Kancheepuram District|
|4. Assistant Commissioner, Vellore||Vellore District|
|3||Joint Commissioner, Salem||5. Assistant Commissioner, Dharmapuri||Dharmapuri District and Krishnagiri District|
|6. Assistant Commissioner, Salem||Salem District|
|7. Assistant Commissioner, Namakkal||Namakkal District|
|4||Joint Commissioner, Coimbatore||8. Assistant Commissioner, Coimbatore||Coimbatore District and Nilgiris District|
|9. Assistant Commissioner, Erode||Erode District|
|10. Assistant Commissioner, Tiruppur||Tiruppur District|
|5||Joint Commissioner, Thanjavur||11. Assistant Commissioner, Thanjavur||Thanjavur District (Except Thiruvidaimarudur and Kumbakonam Taluks)|
|12. Assistant Commissioner, Nagapattinam||Nagapattinam District (Except Sirkali, Mayiladuthurai and Tharangambadi Taluks)|
|13. Assistant Commissioner, Thiruvarur||Thiruvarur District|
|6||Joint Commissioner, Mayiladuthurai||14. Assistant Commissioner, Kumbakonam||Thiruvidaimaruthur, Kumbakonam Taluks in Thanjavur District and Mayiladuthurai, Sirkali and Tharangambadi Taluks in Nagapattinam District|
|7||Joint Commissioner, Villupuram||15. Assistant Commissioner, Cuddalore||Cuddalore District|
|16. Assistant Commissioner, Villupuram||Villupuram District|
|17. Assistant Commissioner, Thiruvannamalai||Thiruvannamalai District|
|8||Joint Commissioner, Tiruchirappalli||18. Assistant Commissioner, Tiruchirappalli||Tiruchirappalli District|
|19. Assistant Commissioner, Ariyalur||Perambalur District and Ariyalur District|
|20. Assistant Commissioner, Pudukottai||Pudukottai District|
|21. Assistant Commissioner, Karur||Karur District|
|9||Joint Commissioner, Madurai||22. Assistant Commissioner, Madurai||Madurai District|
|23. Assistant Commissioner, Dindigul||Dindigul District and Theni District|
|10||Joint Commissioner, Sivagangai||24. Assistant Commissioner, Virudhunagar||Virudhunagar District|
|25. Assistant Commissioner, Paramakudi||Sivagangai District and Ramanathapuram District|
|11||Joint Commissioner, Tirunelveli||26. Assistant Commissioner, Tirunelveli||Tirunelveli District|
|27. Assistant Commissioner, Thoothukudi||Thoothukudi District|
|28.Assistant Commissioner, Nager Kovil||Kanniyakumari District|
Besides, there are 224 Inspectors serving as field officers at the Taluk level.
To assist the Joint Commissioner/ Executive Officer of Palani Arulmigu Dhandayuthapaniswamy Temple, there is a Deputy Commissioner and a Personal Assistant in the cadre of Assistant Commissioner. 5 Personal Assistant posts in the cadre of Assistant Commissioner have been created in the temples at Tiruchendur, Madurai, Srirangam, Rameshwaram and Tiruttani where the executive officers are in the cadre of Joint commissioner. 5 Personal Assistants are serving in these posts.
To appraise the jewels, ornaments, and valuables of the temples there are six Deputy Commissioners and four Assistant Commissioners working as the Verification Officers in the regions of the Joint Commissioners.
Two Deputy Chief Audit Officers, 19 Regional Audit Officers and 28 Assistant Audit Officers are assisting the Chief Audit Officer in auditing the accounts of the Hindu Religious Institutions. Eight Senior Accounts Officers in the cadre of Regional Audit Officers are assisting the Executive Officers in the cadre of Joint Commissioner in eight temples.
At the Headquarters, there is an Engineering Wing consisting of one Superintending Engineer, one Executive Engineer, one Assistant Divisional Engineer, Two Assistant Engineers, one Assistant Engineer (Electrical), one Senior Draughting Officer, Two Junior Draughtsmen and two Draughtsmen to facilitate renovation works in the Religious Institutions by preparing estimates for supervision and for recording measurements. In every Joint Commissioner’s Office there is an Assistant Divisional Engineer and a Draughtsman (except Vilupuram Joint Commissioner’s Office). In every Assistant Commissioner’s Office there is an Assistant Engineer to carryout renovation works.
There are 3 posts of Executive Engineers, one each for the Joint Commissioner regions of Trichy, Salem and Madurai, and 3 posts of Assistant Engineers (Electrical) one each for the Joint Commissioner regions at Trichy, Salem and Madurai.
Apart from these, 8 Engineers are working in Palani, Samayapuram, Madurai, Tiruttani, Bannari, Marudamalai, Anaimalai and Alagarkoil temples, to facilitate renovation and construction works by preparing estimates, supervision, etc.
In order to carry out the Tiruppani works at Chennai, Trichy, Madurai and Salem Joint Commissioner’s region, there are 4 Senior Draughtsmen posts in Arulmigu Subramaniaswamy Temple, Tiruttani, Arulmigu Mariamman Temple, Samayapuram, Arulmigu Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple, Madurai, and Arulmigu Arthanareeswarar Temple, Tiruchencode.
In order to carry out the Tiruppani works at Joint Commissioner’s region of Chennai, Trichy, Madurai and Salem there are 4 Draughtsman posts in Arulmigu Lakshiminarasimhaswamy Temple, Sholingar, Arulmigu Thayumanaswamy Temple, Rockfort, Trichy, Arulmigu Kallalagar Temple, Azhagarkoil, Arulmigu Anjaneyarswamy Temple, Nammakkal.
Based on the significance, revenue, assets and other activities of temples, the following posts of Executive Officers have been sanctioned for the administration and supervision of the religious institutions.
|S. No.||Cadre||No. of posts|
|1||Joint Commissioner/ Executive Officer||10|
|2||Deputy Commissioner / Executive Officer||10|
|3||Asst. Commissioner/ Executive Officer||27|
|4||Executive Officer-Grade I||66|
|5||Executive Officer-Grade II||112|
|6||Executive Officer-Grade III||250|
|7||Executive Officer-Grade IV||154|
In Tamil Nadu, there are 56 Mutts and 19 specific endowments attached to them under the control of the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department. To ensure the proper administration of these mutts, an Audit Section consisting of a Regional Audit Officer, two Audit Inspectors, and two Assistants is functioning in the Headquarters to assist the Commissioner
An Advisory Committee has been constituted by the Government as provided in the Tamil Nadu Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Act 1959 to render advice to the Government on the subjects related to religious and charitable institutions in Tamil Nadu. The Advisory Committee will be constituted having Hon’ble Chief Minister Puratchi Talaivi Amma, as Chairman, the Hon’ble Minister for Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments as the Vice Chairman, the Secretary to Government, Tamil Development, Religious Endowments and Information Department as Member, Commissioner Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department as Member/Secretary and not more than 9 persons as non-official members.
Non-Hereditary Trustees for the temples having an annual income of Rs.10,00,000/- and above and published under Section 46(iii) of the Act, are appointed directly by the Government.
Three Non-Hereditary Trustees for the religious institutions having an annual income of Rs.2,00,000/- and less than Rs. 10,00,000/- and published under Section 46(ii) of the Act, are appointed by the Commissioner. In the interest of the public, two Additional Trustees are nominated by the Government, if necessary.
For the religious institutions published under Section 46(i) of the Act having an annual income of Rs.10,000/- and less than Rs.2,00,000/- three Non-Hereditary Trustees shall be appointed by the Regional Joint Commissioner and in the interest of the public, two Additional Trustees are nominated by the Government, if necessary.
For the non-listed religious institutions under Section 49(i) having an annual income of less than Rs.10,000/-, three Non-Hereditary trustees are appointed by the Assistant Commissioners concerned. Two Non-Hereditary trustees are nominated by the Government in the interest of the public, if necessary.