The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD), which oversees the affairs of the Sri Venkateswara temple in Andhra Pradesh, on Saturday said that it had decided to auction 50 immovable properties that were 'unviable, not useful and prone to encroachment'.
Speaking to reporters, TTD Chairman YV Subba Reddy said that the properties were located in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu and added that the trust board was empowered to sell, exchange and mortgage immovable properties if it was found to be beneficial to the TTD.
"Appealing to devotees not to be carried away by the false reports by a section of media that triggered confusion and hurt the sentiments of the pilgrims, TTD Board Chief said that the practice of selling immovable, non-maintainable and properties that were not useful has been going on since 1974," a press release stated.
Between 1974 and 2014, about 129 immovable properties, which are not useful to TTD, were disposed of, via public auctions, it added.
Citing one such example, the TTD chairman pointed out that a sub-committee was set up for the identification of such immovable properties on July 28, 2015, under the aegis of his predecessor Ch Krishnamurthy.
"Following the report by the sub-committee comprising the then board members, the board, in a resolution in 2016, resolved to dispose of 50 such unviable properties by public auction," the TTD press release said.
"This is only a continuation of the auctioning process commenced by the previous board. The immovable properties that are set for auctioning include tiny house plots varying between 1 cent and 5 cent, besides farmlands ranging between 10 cents and below one acre, which is non-maintainable and non-revenue generating properties for TTD," YV Subba Reddy was quoted as saying in the press note.
The TTD Trust Board chief also stressed that the Andhra Pradesh government was not associated with the disposal of immovable properties of TTD under public auction.