Himachal Pradesh temples allowed to sell their gold, silver stock | india | Hindustan Times
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Himachal Pradesh temples allowed to sell their gold, silver stock

State-administered temples in Himachal Pradesh were granted permission on Tuesday, for the first time, to melt and sell parts of gold and silver, donated by devotees, to generate additional revenue for better upkeep of the temples.

india Updated: Apr 13, 2010 17:41 IST

State-administered temples in Himachal Pradesh were granted permission on Tuesday, for the first time, to melt and sell parts of gold and silver, donated by devotees, to generate additional revenue for better upkeep of the temples.

The sanction was effected through an amendment to The Himachal Pradesh Hindu Public Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments Act, 1984. The amendment bill, introduced on April 9, was passed by voice vote in the absence of members of the opposition Congress party, who walked out on other issues.

Earlier, temple management was not legally permitted to melt and sell its gold and silver in a transparent manner for better utilisation of the sale proceeds.

The bill proposes that 10 per cent of the gold be used for temple related activities, 20 per cent be invested in the State Bank of India's 'gold bond schemes' while 70 per cent be kept in the temples.

The bill states that 20 per cent of silver be used for temple activities and the same amount be reserved in temples. The remaining 60 per cent should be converted into silver coins and sold to devotees and pilgrims at the current market price.

There are more than 30 big temples under the state's control.