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Saturday, Aug 24, 2019

Tirupati trust may curtail practice of ‘VIP darshan’

Newly appointed chairman of TTD trust board Y V Subba Reddy told reporters in Tirumala on Saturday that the present system of providing VIP darshan breaks under three layers would be done away with.

india Updated: Jul 14, 2019 01:42 IST
The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams, which manages the country’s richest temple of Lord Venkateshwara on the Tirumala hills of Andhra Pradesh’s Chittoor district, is contemplating scrapping of VIP break darshans of the deity.
The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams, which manages the country’s richest temple of Lord Venkateshwara on the Tirumala hills of Andhra Pradesh’s Chittoor district, is contemplating scrapping of VIP break darshans of the deity.(PTI Photo)
         

The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams, which manages the country’s richest temple of Lord Venkateshwara on the Tirumala hills of Andhra Pradesh’s Chittoor district, is contemplating scrapping of VIP break darshans of the deity.

Newly appointed chairman of TTD trust board Y V Subba Reddy told reporters in Tirumala on Saturday that the present system of providing VIP darshan breaks under three layers – L-1, L-2 and L-3 – would be done away with soon to avoid inconvenience to the ordinary devotees.

“A decision to this effect will be taken at the meeting of the new TTD trust board to be constituted shortly,” Reddy said.

At present, only Reddy has taken over as the chairman of the TTD trust board, after the earlier board member quit their posts following the formation of the YSR Congress party government in the state. Chief minister Y S Jaganmohan Reddy is expected to constitute the new board in a week or 10 days.

Reddy also requested the VIPs not to come to Tirumala frequently for VIP darshan and restrict their visit to the temple only once a year in order to avoid causing inconvenience to ordinary devotees. He said VIPs would get special darshan but only once a year hereafter.

Normally, judges, top bureaucrats, ministers, MLAs and MPs, besides those holding important positions in the government fall under L-1 category and they are allowed to stand nearer the sanctum sanctorum for a couple of minutes for Aarti and other rituals.

While senior officials of the temple, their family members and government officials get the darshan under L-2 category, the other VIPs who get recommendation letters from the trust board members, CMO, ministers’ peshis and MPs will be provided break darshan under L-3 category, but the line moves a little faster.

The preferential treatment given to the VVIPs and VIPs has been incurring the wrath of the other devotees as the break darshan often runs into more than two or three hours. Recently, an advocate Umesh Chandra filed a public interest litigation in the High Court seeking a direction to temple management to scrap the discriminatory treatment. The case is pending hearing in the court.

Recently, Vice-President of India M Venkaiah Naidu suggested that the VIPs should restrict their visits to the Tirumala temple to once a year.

First Published: Jul 13, 2019 20:35 IST

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