Tirumala Tirupati temple is one of the most ancients temples in India which is known for its rich history and culture, where Lord himself is said to have resided. This ancient temple exists since thousands of years and is regarded one of the most holiest places for Hindus.
The temple which was once known for its rich cultural tradition, now under the influence of politicians and corrupt administration is slowly losing its sheen. The shocking claims made by the head priest of the Tirumala Tirupati temple has shown the real face of the TTD officials and the corrupt government which is literally destroying one of the oldest temples of India.
The head priest Ramana Dikshitulu in a press meet in Chennai made claims that the Tirupati temple administration has gone worst in the recent years with massive corruption and loot. He accused that there was massive impropriety of funds in the temple and is being diverted to unknown sources. He said that the TTD administration had completely lost commitment and was indulging in the misuse of crores of money that the temple received. He also said that some of the ancient jewels which were gifted by Kings and Queens centuries ago have gone missing and the TTD administration had completely ignored the issue.
Ramana Sikshitulu said “It’s unfortunate that we (hereditary priests), who for generations dedicated ourselves to temple service, are so helpless today. Until 1996, we were custodians of the Lord’s jewellery and maintained up-to-date records of the inventory. But, in the 22 years since Andhra government took over the reins, not once has the jewellery count been done. Of late, only the newer jewellery is given to adorn the Lord. What happened to the ancient ornaments? An open audit should be done. Digital records should be made for transparency.” The New Indian Express Report
The head priest slammed the administration on issues such as VIP darshans, shortening of rituals and alleged commercialization of the temple. “The authorities have no respect for traditions or practices as laid down by agamas (vedic scriptures defining traditions and rituals in the temple). This would result in devotees losing faith and lead to catastrophic incidents,” he warned. The New Indian Express Report
The head priest said that he had written about this issue to the Prime Minister, President, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and Andhra Governor and demanded the devotees to demand answers from the administration and protect the sanctity of the temple.
It is infact true that since the time the governments decided to take over temple administration in various states, most of the temples have faced a similar situation. Most of the priests have complained that the donations made to the temple was being diverted to Madrasa and Churches for appeasement politics by the government. Before, when the administration was with the temple priests, the funds were being used for temple development and to provide regular salaries for the priests. But since the time government took over, they have stopped paying regular salaries to priests and funds is being misused in a big way. Recently there was a huge controversy after a Christian woman from TDP was appointed as the member of TTD board. The devotees staged a massive protest against the appointment of a Christian lady for a Hindu temple board. Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu drew serious protests from different quarters including devotees, Hindu groups, BJP and many others for appointing a self-proclaimed Christian as a member of the governing body of the country’s prestigious Tirupati Balaji temple.
They demanded answers from Chandrababu Naidu questioning if any Churches and Mosques appointed Hindus as their board members. Although the lady tried to protect herself saying she was a Dalit, her recent statement in one of the Christian channel exposed her completely. She had claimed that she was a Christian and carries Bible. The video clip has gone viral soon after the state government (endowments department) issued order appointing 17 members to the trust board. So, this was not just a random appointment but the government was playing a sinister ploy to infiltrate the temple board with Christian and other community members in a bid to divert all funds and appease the vote banks for the coming elections.
Most of the temples in India have lost sanctity after the government have taken over and are facing huge mismanagement in the allocation of funds for development works.
Check the below article to know how temple funds are being diverted.