The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD), which manages the affairs of the Tirumala Venkateswara temple in Tirupati, said that it has suffered losses of over Rs 4 crore due to the heavy rains that lashed parts of Andhra Pradesh over the past few days. The hill shrine had witnessed the worst rains in thirty years between November 17 and 19, TTD Chairman YV Subba Reddy said. As a result of the heavy rains, dams and check dams in the Seshachalam Hills overflowed through the Kapila Theertham falls and led to inundation in Tirupati, he said.
As the Venkateswara temple atop Tirumala hills was flooded due to the heavy rains, it was briefly closed to devotees. The ghat roads leading to the temple were also closed due to landslides. With the barricade wall near the Akkagarla temple on the first ghat road being damaged, boulders fell onto the street in four places, Subba Reddy said. TTD staff and other officials have removed these obstructions, and traffic has now resumed on the first ghat road, he added.
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On the second ghat road, landslides occurred in 13 places, with the retaining wall being damaged in five places, he said. Traffic has been restored on this road as well. Three rooms of the Tirumala Narayanagiri guest house were damaged due to the collapse of a wall. The Srivari Metlu path was also damaged due to the rains. The back wall of the TTD administration building in Tirupati, as well as the compound walls of TTD rest houses in Ramnagar, Vinayakanagar, GMB quarters and Srinivasam, were also damaged. An atrium of the Kapila Theertham temple was also damaged, and repairs are estimated to cost around Rs 70 lakh.
While the ghat roads have been reopened for vehicular traffic, the two stairways meant for pilgrims to trek the hills remain closed. Pilgrims who booked tickets online were being allowed for darshan of Lord Venkateswara, according to PTI. Those who had booked tickets but couldnâ€™t avail darshan will be allowed to have darshan once the rains subside, TTD said.
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