Seer sore over TTD's zeal for commercialisation

Asking the Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanams (TTD) not to treat Lord Balaji as a mere idol, Tridandi Chinna Ramanuja Jeeyar Swami launched a tirade against the TTD for its commercial ways of worshipping. The seer, who has huge followers in the state, initiated a debate on the 110 blunders committed by the second richest religious board in the world. 

The Tridandi seer alleged that the TTD had violated the historical, spiritual, heritage and cultural parameters of the ancient temple. “Those who criticize me are ignorant of the traditions, customs, heritage and culture of Hindu dharma. The TTD had said in 2002 that it had committed 110 blunders. Even after one decade, the TTD is not able to rectify them,” he said addressing his followers in Tirupathi.

“As human beings, we take rest for hours, but it is unfortunate that the TTD is allowing darshan even after 1 am. In the past, I was able to make the TTD introduce a break between 1 am and 3 am. Now, this is gone. During my absence, the TTD demolished the 1,000 pillar mandapam in front of the main temple becau se the devotees need more space. Is the temple for the lord or for the earthly comforts of the people?  I questioned the sacrilegious act.

But in vain,” he rued. Referring to the 1,000-pillar mandapam demolition and hurdles to the proposed Mani mandapam in its place, Swami said that by demolishing ancient, historical and sacred structures, the TTD was resorting to destroy the history of the Alwars and all evidence of Puranic legends.

TTD chairman, Kanumuri Bapiraju, responding to a request to restore Mani mandapam said that he was a politician and could easily escape from promises. “I will always support good things,” he said diplomatically, without giving any direct assurance.

Reacting to the war of words between Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD) officials, archakas and Chinna Jeeyar Swami over the performance of rituals at the temple, LV Subramanyam, executive officer of the temple, said that he was ready to lay down his life were if any wrong doing is found at the worship place of Lord Venkateswara.

Denying allegations, LV Subramanyam said everything was being done in accordance with the Aagama shastras. He brushed aside the seer’s argument that Veyi kaalla (1,000 pillar) mandapam must be rebuild to conform with the Aagama. He assured that all rituals are performed under the supervision of the temple’s jeeyars and that, he could vouch for their legitimacy.  

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