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Naidu to lead TDP stir against corrupt TTD administration

After spearheading the agitation over Babhli and other `illegal` irrigation projects being built by neighbouring Maharashtra on river Godavari, TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu is now preparing for yet another battle.



Hyderabad: After spearheading the agitation over Babhli and other `illegal` irrigation projects being built by neighbouring Maharashtra on river Godavari, TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu is now preparing for yet another battle.

This time, his fight will be within Andhra Pradesh, for protecting the temples in general and restoring the sanctity of Tirumala, the world-famous hill shrine of Lord
Venkateswara, in particular.

The former Andhra Chief Minister will reach Tirupati on August 7 and lead a `dharna` (sit-in demonstration) with over 20,000 TDP workers in front of the Tirumala Tirupati
Devasthanams (TTD) administrative office in the town.

After noon the same day, Naidu and a group of senior party leaders will take the pedestrian path from Alipiri, the foot of the hills, to the Tirumala hill shrine where they will worship the Lord seeking to "cleanse" the corrupt TTD administration.

"I will be trekking the Tirumala hills after a long gap of over 35 years. I went up the hills by foot when I was a student," Chandrababu told a news agency.

"In the last six years, ever since the Congress came to power under YS Rajasekhara Reddy, the sanctity of the world-famous hill shrine has been totally eroded. The TTD
administration is steeped in unprecedented corruption. The religious sentiments of crores of devotees of Lord Venkateswara have been badly hurt by the way the temple
affairs are run under the current administration," the TDP chief pointed out.

He wants the state government to immediately disband the TTD Trust Board, headed by liquor baron DK Audikesavulu Naidu, and appoint a new apolitical board in its place.

Several scandals, like disappearance of invaluable gold ornaments presented to the Lord by emperor Srikrishnadevaraya and illegal sale of seva tickets would be highlighted as part of the TDP`s agitation, according to senior MLAs Gali Muddukrishnama Naidu and Bojjala Gopalakrishna Reddy.

"Some special seva tickets of the Lord have been sold out for the next 50 years. Some members of the TTD Board sold these tickets in the black market," they alleged and demanded that the inquiry report by the Vigilance and Enforcement Department into the TTD affairs be publicised immediately.

The TDP initially planned to organise a silent protest with 20,000 people in front of the main temple in Tirumala but later dropped the move as it may cause inconvenience to
pilgrims.

On August 8, Chandrababu Naidu will visit Srikalahasti and inspect the site where the Siva temple`s gali gopuram, built about 500 years ago by Srikrishnadevaraya, collapsed a
couple of months ago.

He will later proceed to the Varasiddhi Vinayaka temple at Kanipakam in Chittoor district as part of the "save temples" campaign.

PTI

From Zee News

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