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At least 743 Tirupati Balaji Staff Infected By COVID-19, No Plans To Shut Temple

by GoNews Desk 2 months ago Views 843
At least 743 Tirupati Balaji Staff Infected By COV
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Despite all efforts to contain COVID-19 infection at the famous Tirupati Balaji temple in Andhra Pradesh, as many as 743 staff members have tested positive while three people including a priest had died.

Despite that, the temple management has no intention of stopping Darshans. On August 8, over 8,500 devotees visited the temple.

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Tirupati Balaji temple was reopened on June 11 after 80 days after the lockdown, after which lakhs of devotees have visited here. Just in the month of July, 2.38 lakh devotees from every corner of the country had come for Darshan of Lord Venkateswara. Initially, the number of visitors was fixed at 12,000, but now every day 9,000 devotees are allowed for Darshan.

Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD) executive officer Anil Kumar Singhal said that the decision was praised when the temple was opened for darshan. But after cases exploded, people started criticising the decision that the temple management had decided to continue Darshan to earn money.

Singhal dismissing such allegations, said that the money being earned from Darshan is being used on the measures to contain infection. Singhal said that 403 people in the temple staff who got infected have recovered while 335 people are undergoing treatment.

According to the temple management, there was some decrease in the number of devotees due to rising infection in Tirupati, but the figure has started increasing over the last three days. On August 8, about 8,500 devotees arrived for darshan while the target was capped at 9,000. Due to the rise in cases across the country, people residing under red zones are not able to visit the temple for darshan. Such people had spent thousands of rupees on booking. The temple management has said that the money will not be refunded as the refund facility was only for the lockdown period.

The trade union CITU and Workers United Front had appealed to stop the darshan when the coronavirus cases continued to spike in the temple, but the temple management said that the darshan would not be stopped.

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