BJP spokesperson G. Bhanuprakash Reddy on Saturday demanded that every devotee coming for Lord Venkateswara’s darshan be allowed to travel to Tirumala.
Speaking to the media, he said that at a time when all educational institutions are reopened, airlines are operating at full capacity and thousands of people are participating in elections in five states, pilgrims to Tirumala will not are not allowed to reach the city under the pretext of “measures to combat COVID-19”.
On the other hand, indiscriminate issuance of offline Sarva darshan tokens in Tirupati also subjects pilgrims to severe hardship, forcing them to crowd public places, platforms and sidewalks. This, he said, can be effectively countered by allowing them to travel to town and seek free shelter at the TTD Pilgrim Facilities Complex (PAC) and free food at the Annadanam complex.
He also urged TTD to rethink its decision to close all restaurants and eateries at the top of the city. The fact that hundreds of families earn a living should not be ignored, he said.
Mr Bhanuprakash Reddy, who also addressed the proposed increase in Arjitha Seva ticket prices, said the city is a spiritual center and not a commercial enterprise.