Uttarakhand Governor Baby Rani Maurya gave her assent to the ‘Devsthanam bill’, which aims at better management of 51 Hindu shrines, in Dehradun on Tuesday. The bill was passed by the state assembly on 10 December last year. With this the all the formalities for forming a board alike Vaishno Devi Shrine Board has got completed in Uttarakhand. Now, the board will manage Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri, Yamunotri and 47 other shrines (total 51) in the hill state.

Right from the day news about Uttarakhand government making efforts to form a bill on lines of the Vaishno Devi Shrine Board came into light the Teerth Purohits began opposing it. They even staged protest and Congress party support the agitation of the Teerth Purohits. But, the Uttarakhand government was determined to implement the bill for introducing better facilities for the pilgrims.

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat said, “The board will manage the Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri, Yamunotri and other associated shrines but the rights of the stakeholders will remain intact.”

The state government studied the acts of Vaishno Devi Shrine Board, Somnath Trust, Shri Saibaba Sansthan Trust, etc before formulating the bill. The bill aims at providing better facilities to the pilgrims and better management of the shrines. The main concern of many affected stakeholders was related to income rather than the traditional role and rights.