Telangana temples shut for statehood


Hyderabad : It is not just the ordinary people in Telangana who are affected by the ongoing general strike. Even the temples have been shut by priests — all for the cause of a separate state.

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Hundreds of temples across the region, comprising Hyderabad and nine other districts, stopped ‘Arjitha sevas’ and other special rituals as priests and other employees joined the ‘people’s strike’ which entered its 15th day.

Except for ‘darshan’, the temples have stopped rituals like ‘Arjitha sevas’ ‘Abhishekha’ and ‘Arachana’ on a call given by the Joint Action Committee of Telangana priests and employees of endowment department, which manages the affairs of the temples.

Upendra Sharma, one of the top priests and leaders of JAC, said the action was in tune with the aspirations of four crore people of Telangana who are fighting for a statehood.

According to officials of the endowment departments, the temples would lose huge income because of the protest.

Sri Lakshminarasimha Swamy Temple at Yadagirigutta in Nalgonda district, also called the Tirupati of Telangana, wore a deserted look Tuesday as the temple was shut for all rituals. Hundreds of people throng the temple every day and the strike is likely to result in the loss of Rs.4-5 lakh.

The other famous temples in the region, including those at Bhadrachalam, Vemulawada and Basar, were also hit by the strike by priests and other employees.

A large number of temples in Mahabubnagar, Warangal and Karimnagar districts — the hotbeds of Telangana movement — were closed since Sep 13. Rajarajeswari Swami temple at Vemulawada in Karimnagar district has so far lost revenue of Rs.60 lakh.

The famous Jogulamba at Alampur in Mahabubnagar district, the historical Bhadrakali temple and Thousand Pillars temple in Warangal remained closed for two weeks.