The Madurai bench of the Madras High Court on Wednesday refused to consider a plea by Isha Foundation to direct authorities to carry out an external audit of temples, as urgent. The petition moved by founder of Isha Foundation Jaggi Vasudev asked the court to direct authorities to conduct an external audit of temples managed by the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department. On Wednesday, a Bench comprising Justices TS Sivagnanam and Ananthi refused to hear the petition and stated that the issue was not extremely urgent.
The court told Jaggi Vasudevâ€™s counsel that people were dying due to COVID-19 and so the foundation should support the government's efforts to fight the pandemic. The court is currently hearing only urgent matters due to the prevailing pandemic situation and said that they will hear this particular case once normalcy returns.
Jaggi Vasudev was recently in the news after a heated exchange with Tamil Nadu Finance Minister P Thiaga Rajan, who called the former a 'commercial operator' and a 'publicity hound'. In an interview with The Hindu, P Thiaga Rajan said, â€śJaggi is a publicity hound trying to find another angle to make additional money...Will a godman, who is focused on god, be selling sivarathiri tickets for Rs 5,00,000, Rs 50,000 and Rs 5,000? Is that a sign of a man of god? Is that the identifying mark of a spiritual man? He is a commercial operator pretending to use god and religion to get help.â€ť
In a response, Isha foundation volunteers wrote a letter, where they said, â€śIt is deeply unfortunate that a person holding high public office should resort to name-calling of a highly respected public figure. This unseemly attack trivialises the efforts and dedication of millions of Isha volunteers worldwide who are working tirelessly in service of humanity.â€ť.