Tirupati: A free meal complex that can
cater to about 75,000 devotees a day was Thursday inaugurated by President Pratibha Devisingh Patil near the famous hill shrine
of Lord Venkateswara at Tirumala here.
The building has four huge dining halls with a seating
capacity of 1,000 each, temple sources told reporters.
Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD), which manages
the temple, has incurred a cost of Rs 33 crore in its
construction, they said.
Patil, her husband Devisingh Ramsingh Shekhawat and
other family members also offered prayers to Lord Venkateswara
on the occasion of her 46th wedding anniversary.
She arrived here yesterday and has been accompanied by
Andhra Pradesh Governor E S L Narasimhan, Chief Minister N
Kirankumar Reddy and PRP Chief K Chiranjeevi throughout the
This is her second visit to the shrine, which she had
earlier visited on July 7, 2008 when she launched TTD-run
Sri Venkateswara Bhakthi television channel.
A thick blanket of security was put in place at
Tirumala and in Tirupati for the tour.