The spat between the administrators of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD) and the temple's former chief priest, Ramana Deekshitulu, turned ugly on Tuesday as the former said that it was mulling legal action for 'defamation'.
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.
According to media reports, the board also discussed fighting back against BJP MP Subramanian Swamy, if he decides to file a petition.
Meanwhile, the TTD also sought the advice of the 'Agama' advisors to publicly display Lord Venkateswara's ornaments.
âAll jewels of Lord Venkateswara as mentioned in Thiruvabharanam register are safe. If Agamas permit, we are ready to display the jewellery to the public,â TTD Chairman Sudhakar Yadav told reporters.
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.