The Sree Maha Mariamman Temple, located on 251 Yishun Ave 3, has been closed due to the passing of the temple president. This move by the temple’s committee has attracted severe flak from devotees who have criticised that closing a place of worship when a leader has passed away is “totally unacceptable.”
The following notice announcing the temple closure has been circulating online. The notice roughly translates to:
NOTICE: It is with sadness that we announce that our temple leader, dear mother, has gone to seek Shri Maha Mariamman’s holiness. The temple will be closed from the evening of 7 Dec 2017 to 8 Dec 2017. Temple worship will resume as per normal from Saturday, 9 Dec 2017, morning. – Temple management group
This has not flown well with devotees who have sarcastically questioned whether the temple president died within the temple for the temple to be closed.
Others have also questioned whether this is acceptable under the Hindu Endowments Board (HEB) regulations and whether the HEB is doing anything about this. It appears that several devotees have reached out to HEB but it is unclear whether the Board has responded.
Netizens have also brought up negative experiences they have had with the late temple president who has allegedly chased devotees from the temple in the past:
An especially severe excoriation of the temple committee’s decision to close the temple is being re-posted online. The original post is by Facebook user called Jay Shree who labelled the move “absurd” and criticised the temple for depriving devotees of doing daily prayers because of the temple leader’s passing.
She also noted that the temple leader’s funeral was being held in her home and not the temple, as per the leader’s obituary, and asked whether the late leader is superior to god: