In a major development, former chief priest of Tirumala temple Ramana Deekshitulu met with the Leader of Opposition in Andhra Pradesh, YS Jaganmohan Reddy on Thursday, over the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam's (TTD) decision to sack him.
Though it was a meeting behind closed doors, media reports suggest that Deekshitulu explained his version of events to the YSRCP chief and alleged that he was sacked for pointing out irregularities in the functioning of the temple board.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting at the YSRCP chief's Lotus Pond residence in Hyderabad, Deekshitulu said that he only met Jagan, as he wanted a solution.
Lashing out at Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu, he said, "All we want is the solution to our problems. Let the CM address them. We will put his portrait in our house and worship him. All I want is to serve Lord Venkateswara peacefully. We have visited Vijayawada several times to meet him. He even asked us to come to Vijayawada but did not give appointment. We will go to those who listen to our problems."
Earlier this week, speaking to reporters in Tirumala after meeting with the temple's executive board, TTD executive officer Anil Kumar Singhal said that they were mulling legal action against Deekshitulu for the allegations that he levelled against them.
âWe have given all the information in the form of press releases and video clippings on the allegations that ornaments are not safe and rituals are not being adhered to. Now, on the advice of our legal team, we will defamation cases against those levelling baseless allegations,â Singhal was quoted as saying.
The TTD's response came a day after former chief priest Ramana Deekshitulu, who was relieved from his services, said that there were two attempts on his life when AV Dharma Reddy was the special officer (SO) of the temple administration.
Speaking to media in Hyderabad, Deekshitulu said that there should be a greater probe into the irregularities and said that he is ready to face an inquiry.
Earlier in May, Deekshithulu, along with a few other priests, convened a press meet in Chennai, and had alleged that the TTD authorities were corrupt and that several ornaments belonging to the temple, particularly old jewellery, were missing.
Claiming that the activities of the TTD authorities were not transparent, he had demanded an open audit of the ornaments and donations received by the temple.