NCOHP – National Council of Hindu Priests

The South African Hindu Maha Sabha is consistently inundated with numerous complaints from individuals, families and organizations concerning malpractices adopted by priests in the performance of their duties. Equally some priests have expressed concern that the behaviour of their counterparts often denigrate and brings disrepute to the profession. It is in this environment of dissatisfaction that the Maha Sabha has decided to launch a programme that would provide some degree of control to both parties.

This led to the creation of the National Council of Hindu Priests under the banner of the South African Hindu Maha Sabha. However in order to create such a professional body requires the support of the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA), a Government Institution, to ensure educational sustainability and conformity. It is precisely these two institutions that will monitor this programme which will include, inter alia, the training, curriculum and syllabus, external assessment and final acceptance as a registered professional priest.

  • Promote standardised practice across South Africa in the implementation of priestly duties.
  • Monitor the Code of Ethics that promotes best practice in priestly responsibilities.
  • Create a professional identity in the career of a priest.
  • Ensure continuing professional development to maintain and uphold standards

The South African Hindu Maha Sabha strives to ensure that the Hindu community is culturally enriched by providing accredited and professionally trained priests who would display professionalism, continually promoting Hinduism in accordance with Hindu scriptures

To establish/promote a knowledgeable, ethical, sustainable and professional priest community under the auspices of the South African Hindu Maha Sabha.


  • It gives recognition as a professional.
  • Builds a sense of credibility and trust.
  • Access to continuing professional development.
  • Validates a level of professional achievement and standards of practice.
  • Increases career advancement opportunities.
  • Provides a sense of pride and personal accomplishment.
  • Recognizes a standard level of knowledge and practice.
  • Listed on a “professional status” register, a hallmark of up to date professionals as a Hindu Religious Practioner.
  • Invitations and discounts on training events and conferences and workshops.
  • Use of resources eg. SAHMS Library, Literature
  • Resolution of conflict
Creates a standard of practice.
Creates a sustainable and recognised industry.
Develops and supports a professional code of conduct.
Serves as an industry reference point.
Creates a common understanding and language.
Recognises knowledge skill and practice.
Promotes priesthood as a career path.
NCHOP Organogram
  • Increases competence level of priests making them a significant resource in promoting knowledge of Hinduism.
  • Improves client/member satisfaction and engagement.
  • Provides the standards for hiring within the sector.
  • Assurance of professional conduct in the workplace.
  • Enhances image of the profession.

The South African Hindu Maha Sabha recommends that the community use priests who are professionally registered as they have signed the Code of Conduct. SAHMS cannot be held accountable if community members use priests outside the Professional Body i.e: the National Council of Hindu Priests.