A pilgrim visiting the ongoing Dasara Navaratri celebrations at the Bhadrakali Temple in Warangal was in for a shock after he found a dead rat in a packet of 'pulihora prasadam'.
The Times of India reported:
Though this incident occurred on Monday, temple authorities tried to hush up the matter fearing adverse publicity. About 400 packets of the pulihora prasadam cooked with the rat in it, was already sold by the time the dead rodent was discovered.
The report adds that the temple authorities later suspended a priest-cum-cook M Kodandam, who was in charge of preparing the prasadam and fined the person who packed the prasadam into the pouches.
Authorities have said that they will ensure that such incidents do not recur.
The much awaited annual Durga Navaratri celebrations began at the ancient Bhadrakali temple on a grand note on Saturday.
The Hindu reported:
The Bhadrakali temple is one of the ancient temples in Warangal. Though many believe that the temple was built during the Kakatiya era, ancient scriptures reveal that the Bhadrakali temple was built in the year 625 AD. Chalukya King Pulikesi-II built the temple. The design of the pillars suggest that the temple was built during the Chalukya time.
The report adds that the temple sees thousands of visitors everyday, during the annual event.
This incident comes shortly after a similar incident in Andhra's Kanaka Durga Temple in Vijayawada, where the 'laddu prasadam' was found to be full of worms and insects by pilgrims who received the sweet.
Reports stated that initial complaints by devotees saw a backlash by the officials, who claimed that the pilgrims were deliberately trying to tarnish the image of the temple.
However, as more complaints poured in, the temple executive officer visited the kitchen and reportedly found flies and cockroaches feasting on the laddus.