President Ram Nath Kovind offered prayers at temple of Lord Venkateswara atop Tirumala on Sunday. Accompanied by wife Savita Kovind and daughter Swati, the President had the 'darshan' at the famous hill shrine.
Kovind, on a two-day visit to Tirumala, followed the temple tradition by first offering prayers at Sri Bhu Varaha Swamy temple and later the Tirumala temple.
He was greeted by Andhra Pradesh and Telangana Governor E S L Narasimhan who accompanied him during the 'darshan'.
Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD) Trust Board Chairman Y V Subba Reddy, Executive Officer Anil Kumar Singhal and Special Officer A.V. Dharma Reddy welcomed him. The temple priests offered the President traditional 'Isthikaphal' welcome amid the chanting of Vedic mantras.
Venugopala Dikshitulu, one of the chief priests of the temple, explained to the President the significance of the presiding deity and the importance of jewels adorned to the 'Mula Virat', said TTD.
Later at Ranganayakula Mandapam, 'Vedasirvachanam' was rendered to the President and his family. The Teertha prasadams, laminated photo frame of Lord and Sesha Vastram were presented to the President by the TTD Chairman and the Executive Officer.
Tirumala Pedda Jiyar Swamy and Chinna Jiyar Swamy were present during the prayers. Andhra Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Narayana Swamy, Vijay Sai Reddy (MP) and C. Bhaskar Reddy (MLA) were also present.
After the prayers at Tirumala temple, the President left for Sriharikota in the Nellore district to witness the launch of lunar mission Chandrayaan-2. It was set to be launched in the early hours of July 15 but was postponed due to a technical snag.