Temple committee files suit to set aside court order
The Sri Muneswarar Kaliyaman temple committee attempts to get a stay of execution on developer Hap Seng Sdn Bhd’s eviction order pending a hearing.
KUALA LUMPUR: The Sri Muneswarar Kaliyaman temple committee has filed a suit to set aside developer Hap Seng Sdn Bhd’s court order which allows it to demolish the 100-year old structure.
The suit was filed on Aug 17 at the Kuala Lumpur High Court.
“We will also try to get the temple committee to be a party in the legal battle, as previously Hap Seng only named Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) as the defendant while leaving out the temple,” said Subang MP R Sivarasa at a press conference today.
Also present was Teluk Intan MP Manogaran. Both MPs are providing legal assistance to the temple committee.
The court has yet to set a date for the hearing.
In July, DBKL threatened to demolish the temple located at Jalan Tengah, off Jalan P Ramlee, after Hap Seng obtained a court order to demolish the structure for its high-rise building project.
The 5,119 square feet sized temple is situated on DBKL land and the city hall had allowed it to remain there after giving verbal assurances in 2010.
Sivarasa claimed that the developer did not inform the court about the temple’s history during its proceedings to get the eviction order.
“And it’s shocking that the company can get a court order to destroy the temple without naming the temple committee as a party to the case. They should be allowed to defend themselves,” he said.
Although Hap Seng only wanted eight feet from each side of the temple to build walkways, Sivarasa said that the committee could not allow it as the temple was small.
“Take away those spaces and it cannot function anymore as the temple will be confined to an 800 square feet land,” he said.
Taking Hap Seng to task, Sivarasa said the developer should construct its walkways within its own land as the temple did not encroach into the developer’s territory.
“And DBKL should help the temple as it sits on their land, not facilitating the developer to demolish it,” he added.
Using defunct laws
“DBKL officers came with an order under the Emergency Ordinance (EO) in the pretext of evicting squatters.
“When I told them that the EO had been revoked in Parliament last year, they were surprised and dispersed immediately,” he said.
He also criticised the City Hall for not appealing against the court order when they lost the case to Hap Seng earlier.
“When I asked DBKL for reasons, they just kept mum. They are attempting to collude with the developer on this matter,” alleged Manogaran.
Meanwhile, temple caretaker SR Mangalanagagi said that she had been entrusted to keep the temple running since the passing of her husband in 1999.
“We cannot give space to the developer as we have no space ourselves. Besides, why do you need to build walkways around this place when there is enough pedestrian paths around?” she asked.
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