The Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanam chief priest AV Ramana Deekshitulu on Tuesday made shocking allegations that the administrators of the temple were swindling money and also ruining the sanctity of the Hindu temple, which attracts lakhs of devotees every day.
Demanding an open audit to know how much donation the temple receives and how the authorities spend it, he said that a probe should be initiated into the financial irregularities.
Addressing the media on Tuesday in Chennai, Deekshitulu disclosed that the priests have filed a petition against the administrators demanding transparency pertaining to donations and jewellery, and also to bring the TTD administration under the ambit of the Right to Information Act.
“We have submitted a representation to the Chief Justice of India, President, Prime Minister and CM of Andhra Pradesh, demanding transparency,” he said.
Deekshitulu also alleged a conspiracy by the administrators to bring down the sanctity of the temple.
Further slamming the authorities for damaging the age-old structure by drilling holes into the walls and floors in the name of beautification and for building special lines for VVIPs, he demanded that the Archaeological Survey of India should assess the damage to the structure.
Accusing the administrators of overpowering the priests, he said, “They don’t care to ask our opinion. They don’t allow ASI to enter the temple.”
Deekshitulu also alleged that the authorities do not disclose anything about the ornaments which the temple received.
“We see only the new ornaments used to adorn the holy deity during processions. We don’t know what happened to the old ornaments donated by Sri Krishnadevaraya, Raghoji Bhonsle, Mysuru kings and diwans,” he said, adding, “It is like an iron curtain, nothing comes out of it.”
Besides these allegations of financial irregularities, Deekshitulu also faulted the authorities for interfering in the appointment of archakas (priests). He accused them of bypassing TTD guidelines and shuffling the priests as per their whim and appointing priests whom they favour.