Just few days back, the head priest of Tirupati Temple A.V. Ramana Deekshitulu held a press conference exposing the massive corruption, loot and stealing of jewels of Lord Venkateshwara. He blamed the TTD and the government officials were looting temple’s wealth and jewels that were centuries old.
He had made a scathing attack against the TTD officials saying “that jewellery donated by kings including the emperor Krishna-devaraya, the Mysore maharajas and those of the Pallava and Chola dynasties could not be found.”
This information went viral as people started demanding answers from the TTD and the TDP government in Andhra Pradesh. But shockingly, a news has emerged that one of the rarest of rare diamond which is said to have gone missing from Tirupati Temple has been found in the international auction house. The auction of precious jewels was organised by a company called Sotheby’s which is owned by a British person and has its headquarters in New York. This company held an auction festival last December in Geneva in which many artifacts were displayed. One among them was Raj Pink Diamond, which is regarded as the largest fancy intense pink diamond in the world.
The rare Raj Pink diamond is 37.3 carat stone, was displayed in the Sotheby’s auction. But now it is being said that this is the same diamond which is said to have gone missing from Tirupati and belongs to Lord Venkateshwara. The Head Priest Ramana Deekshitulu suspected that the diamond was probably stolen from Tirupati and have been sold to someone for crores of money. (Deccan Chronicle Report)
He said that the Mysore Maharaja had donated a platinum necklace which had a pink diamond stud, the rarest of the rare variety of diamonds. He said somewhere in 2001, the Chief Vigilance Officer, an IPS officer, had recorded the missing pink diamond from the necklace. But when enquiry was made, the officers said that the diamond was broken due to the throwing of coins at the idol by devotees. But now it is understood that the diamond displayed in Sotheby’s museum is the same diamond which was supposed to be in the Platinum Necklace of Lord Balaji. He recalled adorning the jewel on the Balaji idol till 2001.
The Priest questioned the role of officials and said, if the diamond was broken, then how did it reach the auction house for sale?
He demanded a CBI inquiry into the missing diamond and requested the devotees to raise their voice against the corrupt officials who had gone to the extent of stealing Lord Venkateshwara’s jewels. BJP spokesperson Anjaneya Reddy demanded a thorough enquiry into the affairs of TTD.
But worst part is, just days after the head priest exposed all these corrupt practices, the government under Chandrababu Naidu has sacked the priest. This move has been highly condemned by religious heads, priests who held Chandrababu Naidu directly responsible. After he was removed, Ramana Deekshitulu addressed the media in Chennai and accused the recently constituted TTD trust board and the government officials were interfering with the daily routines at the temple and questioned the authorities about the safety and whereabouts of vast amounts of gold and jewellery donated by the 16th century Vijayanagara king, Srikrishna Devaraya. The antique ornaments donated by the king are estimated to be worth around Rs 2,000 crore. (The Sunday Guardian)
Ramana Deekshitulu said that the new administrative practice was done to take complete control over the Temple and the new TTD board headed by TDP leader, Putta Sudhakar Yadav, was a close relative of Andhra Pradesh Finance Minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu. Yadav’s appointment kicked up a controversy for his proximity to some Church organisations. The Sunday Guardian
Earlier too an attempt was made by TDP government to appoint a Christian woman in the TTD board which was opposed by many devotes and Hindu organisations. 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. So, this is not the first time that Chandrababu Naidu is trying to infiltrate Christians in the TTD board but there is a sinister plot to take over the temple by the government completely with an ill intention to loot crores of money.
When the government was questioned on these allegations, Andhra Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister K.E. Krishna Murthy told The Sunday Guardian on Friday that Deekshitulu had been sacked as he had crossed his “Lakshman Rekha”.
This is not just happening in Tirupati, but all Hindu temples are facing same fate under the control of corrupt governments. The ministers are diverting huge amount of money that is collected in Temples and are diverting it to undisclosed sources which has become a major issue. It is said that many ancient temples have lost centuries old jewels and ornaments and is being sold to different countries for thousands of crores. It is also said that most of the donations made to the temple by devotees is being given to Madrasa and Churches in order to woo the vote banks.
An RTI application filed by an activists showed that 90% of the Temple’s donations was never used for development or improvement of temple facilities but was being diverted to other channels.
Take a look!
Mookambika temple in Karnataka:
In the year, 2014-15 the income to the temple was Rs 31,21,24,946 (Thirty one crores, twenty one laksh, twenty four thousand, nine hundred and forty six) , but the amount spent on development by government was 68,510.
In the year 2015-16, income was Rs 39,13,38,407 amount spent on development >> 68,510.
In the year 2016-17 income was Rs 44,26,03,967 amount spent on development >> 68,510.
Renuka Yellamma temple: