FILE: Kanchi Sankaracharya Jayendra Saraswathi (L) and priest Vijayendra Saraswathi at the Kanchi Mutt temple in Kancheepuram (Agence France-Presse photo)
The acquittal of Kanchi Sankaracharya Jayendra Saraswathi and another pontiff Vijayendra Saraswathi in the case of murder of a temple manager in Tamil Nadu in 2004 is likely to be challenged by a Puducherry-based activist.
In November 2013, a trial court in Puducherry had acquitted the pontiffs of the Kanchi Mutt along with 21 others accused in the case. The Puducherry government did not appeal against that verdict.
Sources in the Puducherry government say they were advised by the Union government to not appeal in the case.
The activist, Varaagi, has filed a petition in the Puducherry court seeking certified copies of the related documents to file the appeal.
"I'm not against anyone. All I want is to find out the real culprits. Whoever was responsible for the murder ought to be punished. Otherwise, murders like this would become rampant," he said.
A Sankararaman, the manager of the Varadarajaperumal temple in Kancheepuram in Tamil Nadu, was murdered inside the premises on September 3, 2004.
The Sankaracharya and pontiff Vijayendra were arrested in 2004 when AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa was the chief minister. They were accused of conspiring to kill the manager who had reportedly exposed misdeeds in the mutt. The Supreme Court had transferred the case to Puducherry following a plea by the Sankaracharya.