VIJAYAWADA/ TIRUMALA : TDP supremo and leader of the Opposition N Chandrababu Naidu has underscored the need to protect the divinity of Lord Venkateswara temple in Tirumala by preventing a “spiritual breach” from taking place atop Seven Hills. In an indirect reference to Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, Naidu asserted that the long established traditions at Tirumala should not be changed for the sake of a non-believer.

A day after the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam’s (TTD) decision not to insist on “traditional declaration” from persons of other religions coming for darshan of the Lord of the Seven Hills, Naidu taking to Twitter on Saturday, insisted that traditions, which have been followed from centuries together, cannot be changed overnight. Naidu said that any religion was nothing, but faith and trust that the believers place in their Lord and in the dharma. In this spirit, the TTD has been insisting on non-Hindus to express their faith in the Lord if they wanted to have darshan or take part in ceremonies in the Tirumala temple. 

Subba Reddy clarifies on controversial statement 
TTD trust board chairperson YV Subba Reddy on Saturday said he had never suggested or indicated withdrawal of mandatory signing of declaration form by non-Hindus seeking darshan of Lord Venkateshwara.  Reiterating that he was against any political dialogue in Tirumala, he said he had only responded to the charges made by a opposition leader on TTD during a press briefing held on Friday. 

“I told the media that thousands of pilgrims come to Tirumala from across the world. Normally, 80,000 to one lakh pilgrims, including those of other faiths, visit the temple for Srivari darshan. And it is humanely impossible to mandatorily seek declaration of faith and belief from all non-Hindus,” he said.The chairperson said he only said that neither Congress president Sonia Gandhi nor late Dr YS Rajasekhar Reddy had ever given such a declaration during their visits to Tirumala.

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