Missing saris: Temple authorities under scanner

Missing saris: Temple authorities under scanner

Kanadurga temple in Vijayawada

An executive board member and an executive officer of two very famous temples of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana were kept under suspension pending an inquiry after two very costly saris gifted by devotees and the Chief Minister went missing.

In July, the sari presented to goddess Subhananda Devi at the Kaleswaram Temple in Jayashankar Bhupalapally district near the project site by Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao had gone missing.

The Chief Minister had offered the sari a year ago while he visited the Kaleswaram project area. It was found missing during a temple audit. The executive officer of Kaleshwaram Temple has been relieved of his duties after the temple authorities tried to conceal the theft by replacing it with a look-alike sari.

In a similar incident, also in Telangana, Naini Supriya, a temple official at the Lord Narasimha Swamy Temple in Dharmapuri of Jagityal district, was transferred to Warangal after a pair of diamond-studded bangles, worth Rs 6 lakh, presented by an NRI in 2016 went missing.

Board member held responsible

The missing of a sari, worth Rs 18,000, gifted to Goddess Kanaka Durga of the famous Durgamma Temple in Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh cost a trust board member her job. A group of devotees who gifted a costly sari to the presiding deity at the temple held responsible the temple executive board member Surya Latha for the missing sari.

Temple authorities found prima facie evidence against the trust board member after verifying the CCTV footage.
Padmaja and a group of devotees from Undavalli in Guntur district complained to the temple authorities that the sari that they gifted to the Goddess went missing after the priests placed it on processional idol as per custom.

The devotees were told by the temple staff that Surya Latha has taken the sari. After police began their investigation Surya Latha refuted the allegations saying that there is no mention of the particular sari at the gift register maintained by the temple. Surya Latha was not allowed to enter the temple premises till the investigation was over.