The Endowments Department claimed that it was done to “facilitate a proper inquiry” into the controversial incident.

Alleged tantric rituals at Kanaka Durga temple EO sacked after panel submits reportImage: Wikimedia Commons/Kapil28
news Controversy Sunday, January 07, 2018 - 09:03

Even as the issue of the alleged 'tantric puja' conducted at the Kanaka Durga Temple in Vijayawada refuses to die down, as Executive Officer A Surya Kumari was sacked by the Andhra Pradesh government on Saturday.

Announcing the move, the Endowments Department claimed that it was done to “facilitate a proper inquiry” into the controversial incident.

The EO was relieved of her duties after Endowments Minister P Manikyala Rao submitted the department’s report on the alleged rituals, while Vijayawada Police Commissioner D Gautam Sawang also submitted a report.

Both reports were submitted to Andhra Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, for further action.

“We have submitted a report on the situation in the temple, allegations levelled by the Devastanam Trust Board members and the charges made by various religious organisations on the pujas performed in the temple,” an intelligence official was quoted as saying.

However, the state is yet to clarify if the tantric rituals took place inside the sanctum sanctum of the temple on December 26. 

Speaking to reporters, Manikyala Rao said, “Naidu is not happy with the performance of executive officer Surya Kumari. She failed to perform her duties. Presence of three unauthorised persons inside ‘antharalayam’ after the closing time of temple is a clear administrative failure. Investigation on the tantric puja is still going on and Naidu asked us to continue detailed enquiry once Surya Kumari gets relieved of her duties."

The Kanaka Durga temple is the second most popular and one of the most crowded temples in the state after the Sri Venkateswara temple atop Tirumala.

Last week, local media reports alleged that a tantric ritual took place after the temple was closed, with the knowledge of chief priest Badrinath Babu.

CCTV footage allegedly showed that priests had decked up the presiding deity as Goddess Kali and performed ‘Bhairavi puja’ for more than two hours.

However, authorities and said that the priests had only performed a ritual to ‘clean’ the sanctum sanctorum by reciting mantras, claiming that it was a monthly procedure.

 

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