TTD (Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam) authorities have decided to ban plastic bottles inside Tirupati Balaji temple. It will be an initiation for making Tirupati hills a plastic-free zone. This step also protects the beauty, neatness, and sanctity of Tirupati shrine.
Deccan Chronicle reports:
The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) authorities issued instructions to strictly prohibit taking of water bottles by the pilgrims inside the Tirumala temple from Saturday. The TTD chief vigilance and security officer, Mr M.K. Singh, told this correspondent that the measure was implemented to prevent the devotees from throwing the used plastic bottles inside the temple at various locations, presenting an ugly look.
The official also clarified that the stricture had nothing to do with any security reasons. He brushed aside the reports in a section of the media that the TTD was forced to ban the water bottles as there was a threat to the temple from the terrorists through liquid bombs. “Our objective behind this is to keep the inside of the temple premises clean. We have noticed that the bottles are strewn at several corners,” Mr Singh said.
Mr Singh said that ban on taking water bottles would prevail only while entering the temple, and the devotees were free to carry them all over the hills, pedestrian route and ghat roads. The TTD would look after providing the water to the devotees in the prohibited zone, including the Vaikuntam Queue Complex.
Interestingly, some devotees said that the security personnel checked the water bottles at the entry points towards the ghat roads and pedestrian route at downhill Alipiri. However, the exercise was abandoned after a couple or hours on Saturday morning, during which time, the bottles and cans were smelt by the security staff. A security staff said that he did not know the reason why the bottles were subjected to scrutiny.
“Just we are asked to smell it, and seize the material if it generated any strong odor. Later, we are asked to stop it after a couple of hours in the morning,” he said. It gave rise to the speculation that the TTD was out to stop carrying water bottles due to security reasons.