Known as the visa temple, the Chilkur Balaji temple, about 35 km west of Hyderabad, has a large following of people for whom the rise and fall in the value of the dollar matters a great deal.
The temple on Wednesday launched a special daylong prayer to alleviate the dollar crunch and in the process arrest the fall of the rupee vis-à-vis the US currency.
Hundreds of people wanting to go abroad throng this prayer house, generally seeking the Lord’s intervention in getting the visa.
Devotees gathered in the morning on the advice of head priests MV Soundarrajan and CS Gopalakrishna and started chanting “Runa Vimochana Nrusimha Stotram”, a mantra invoking Narasimha (Lion God). “Such an invocation will help the dollar crunch to ease and help the recovery of money from defaulters, however big they are,” said Soundarrajan.
“Sree Nrusimham Mahaaveeram, Namami Runa Mukthaye …” is chanted eight times at the end of each verse, meaning “I pray to Lord Lashmi Nrusimha, the Lion God seated with the Goddess of wealth, to tide over these debts”. There are nine verses and the chanting will be done 11 times.
S Rangarajan, another priest, justified the prayers, saying any temple had to do this for the well-being of humanity. He said the temple featured in the Wall Street Journal, US, on December 31, 2007.
Located in Telangana, it is the state’s only temple that does not accept money from devotees and remains out of government control.