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Arjitha Sevas cancelled due to summer rush
The TTD cancelled the weekly Arjitha Sevas to cope with summer rush and they will be resumed from July this year, said TTD EO AV Dharma Reddy.
Tirumala: The TTD cancelled the weekly Arjitha Sevas to cope with summer rush and they will be resumed from July this year, said TTD EO AV Dharma Reddy.
Dharma Reddy in his first 'Dial Your TTD EO' programme after he took full additional charge ((FAC) as EO, held at Tirumala on Friday said the TTD cancelled the weekly Arjitha Sevas so as provide darshan to more number of pilgrims in the summer months and will resume the Sevas from July. Responding to a caller Masthan from Nellore who sought clarification on the Arjitha Sevas which were cancelled from April second week this year including Astadalapada Padmaradhana (Tuesday), Tiruppavada (Thursday) and Nijapada Darshanam (Friday), the EO explained him that this was in the interests of common pilgrims.
With the cancellation of Ashtadala Seva, the TTD is able to provide darshan to 6,000 pilgrims more and with the dispensation of Tiruppavada Seva for another 9,000 pilgrims. He said, there are two types of Sevas at Tirumala temple - Nityakatla and Arjitha Sevas.
Nityakatla Sevas are the ones which are being performed daily on a regular basis. "When scores of temples across the country were closed during the Covid pandemic, we have continued the Nityakatla Sevas which included Suprabhatam, Tomala, Archana, Koluvu and Abhishekam (Fridays) to the deity even during this difficult period of course in Ekantam. i.e with no pilgrim participation, keeping in view that Nityakatla Sevas have been in vogue since several centuries and as per Agamas".
"Whereas the Arjitha Sevas were introduced only a few decades ago to get revenue, he said adding that Arjitha means "income" and introduced for pilgrims.
Even during major festivals like annual Brahmotsavams, Vasanthotsavams, Pavitrotsavams and Ratha Sapthami, Arjitha Sevas remain cancelled to give priority to common devotees. He further informed that after a two-year hiatus due to the impact of Covid, the devotees are now turning out in large numbers for darshan and the TTD has no option but to cancel the weekly sevas for the sake of common pilgrims.
The EO also explained that the TTD has also enabled darshan to common devotees even during the early morning sevas so that the devotees shall also experience the Sevas akin to Udayastamana Sevas ticket-holders. On the cancellation of Vasanthotsavam, Visesha Puja and Sahasra Kalasabhishekam permanently, the EO said the decision was taken to prevent erosion of the processional idols of Sri Malayappa, Sridevi and Bhudevi following the advice of Agama advisors, Jeeyangars and Veda Pundits.
"All these idols are believed to be tens of thousands of years old. We observe nearly 450 festivals in 365 days. This includes Snapanam (celestial bath) to deities in daily Sevas like Vasanthotsavam and weekly Sevas like Visesha Puja and Sahasra Kalasabhishekam. So the religious experts observed that this (Snapanam) may affect the idols in the long run. To protect the deities for the sake of future generations, we have taken the decision," he reiterated. Another caller Anuradha, an artiste from Tanuku, sought EO whether they will get an opportunity to perform at Tirumala to which the EO said cultural programmes were stopped due to Covid. With normalcy returning, the TTD will consider resuming them. In all 15 calls on various issues were received on Friday. TTD officials were present.