Over 1 crore devotees visited Tirumala temple in 2021, 5.96 cr laddus sold: TTD

The number of devotees visiting the temple on a daily basis and the Hundi collections had fallen drastically amid the second wave of COVID-19.
Devotees at the Tirumala Venkateshwara temple: Over 1 crore devotees visited the temple in 2021 according to TTD
Devotees at the Tirumala Venkateshwara temple: Over 1 crore devotees visited the temple in 2021 according to TTD
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Around 1.04 crore people visited the Venkateshwara temple in Tirumala in 2021, even as the number of devotees fell drastically through the second wave of COVID-19 and lockdowns.The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD), which manages the affairs of the temple, shared some of the highlights from the year 2021 on December 31. According to a TTD press release, between January 1 and December 30, 2021, the temple saw footfalls of 1.04 crore pilgrims. 

Hundi collections in 2021 reached a total of Rs 833.41 crore. A total of 5.96 crore laddus were sold throughout the year, while a total of 1.37 crore servings of Anna prasadam (free food for pilgrims) were served. The Kalyanakatta, a place where pilgrims get tonsured to offer their hair to the deity and fulfil their vows, saw 48.75 lakh visitors in 2021, according to TTD. 

The Venkateshwara temple located in Tirumala, Andhra Pradesh, is reputed to be the world's richest Hindu temple. Pilgrims from all over the world visit the temple. Before the pandemic, the temple used to see daily average footfalls of around 50,000 to one lakh devotees. Since the onset of the pandemic, this number has gone down amid lockdowns and other COVID-19 restrictions. Amid the second wave, the number of daily visitors to the temple and the Hundi collections had fallen drastically, going as low as 2,400 devotees per day in May 2021

Meanwhile, the TTD on December 31 said that it had complained to Amazon regarding private vendors using the platform to sell TTD products at higher rates than the prescribed tariff. TTD said that its products like 2022 calendars and diaries were being directly sold via Amazon and India Post, apart from being available at all TTD wedding halls and information centres. “It is noticed by TTD that some private vendors are exploiting Amazon platform and selling TTD products at higher prices than prescribed tariff by TTD,” a press release said, adding that TTD has taken up the issue with Amazon and asked them to “take stringent action on private vendors for exploiting the devotees.”

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