Tirupati to make exemptions in ticket cancellation rule

COVID-19: Tirupati authorities to make exemptions in ticket cancellation rule

As per policy, the TTD, which administers the Lord Venkateswara temple, does not refund such payments normally when the devotees cancel due to their various reasons.

The Tirupati temple authorities are making exceptions in their no refund for ticket cancellation rules perhaps for the first time, to avoid the Covid-19 threat to the hill shrine.

The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams, has on Thursday decided to refund the special entry darshan fees of Rs 300 (collected per head), advance fees paid for Arjitha Seva tickets and for accommodation in Tirupati, Tirumala, if the pilgrims “postpone their date of darshan or cancel the tickets till May 2020 in view of the Corona Virus threat.”

As per policy, the TTD, which administers the Lord Venkateswara temple, does not refund such payments when the devotees cancel their plans.

The decision comes on a day Andhra Pradesh has recorded its first positive case, in nearby Nellore. 

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Tirumala temple has about 75 thousand pilgrim footfalls on normal days and around one lakh on festive days.

“This is the first time such an offer is being made in the wake of the Covid-19 spread,” a senior official told DH. “Devotees who could not avail the services they paid in advance for also do not seek the return normally, believing they have put the money in Swami hundi.”

Earlier this week, TTD has asked the NRI devotees arriving from overseas and foreigners not to visit the hill shrine for 28 days from the day they land in India. It also appealed to the domestic devotees to reschedule their pilgrimage if they are suffering from cough, cold and fever.

 Since refund being an ad-hoc procedure, TTD additional executive officer AV Dharma Reddy has asked devotees who have any doubts regarding cancellation of tickets to mail to dyeotemple@gmail.com for response. TTD call centre staff would also guide the pilgrims in this regard.


Awareness and Counselling Camps

 To spread awareness among Tirumala visiting pilgrims and to educate them on safety measures to prevent Covid 19 spread, TTD is opening three awareness and counselling camps at Alipiri, Srivari Mettu footpath routes and at the Alipiri Toll Gate from Friday, the AEO said.  

 The Travancore Devaswom Board that administers the Sabarimala Temple had asked all its devotees to avoid visiting the famous shrine in Kerala where several Covid-19 cases are confirmed.



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