President worships at Lord Balaji temple
Tirupati: President Pranab Mukherjee on Sunday offered prayers at the famous hill shrine of Lord Venkateswara at nearby Tirumala.
On his maiden 16-hour visit to the temple town after assuming the country`s highest office, Mukherjee arrived at the shrine at the crack of the dawn to a ceremonious welcome with the priests according him full temple honours.
Amid chanting of vedic hymns, he was conducted to the sanctum sanctorum from the main entrance of the 2000-year old cash-rich shrine.
Mukherjee spent about half-an-hour in the temple premises, temple sources told a news agency.
After the worship, the President made an offering in the `hundi` (offering box), they said.
Later, the President was presented with a sacred silk cloth, holy water and `laddu` prasadam by temple authorities while the priests invoked divine blessings on the First Citizen at the Sri Ranaganayaka Mandapam.
Andhra Pradesh Governor ESL Narasimhan, Chief Minister N Kirankumar Reddy, Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams chairman K Bapiraju accompanied the President during the visit.
As per tradition, Mukherjee paid his obeisance at the nearby shrine of Sri Adi Varahaswamy before visiting the Lord Venkateswara temple.
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