Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) is facing a new controversy after appointing a Punjab native, Anil Kumar Singhal, as the executive officer. In fact, this is a rare instance when TTD has an executive officer who is not a native of Andhra Pradesh.

The appointment has invited the wrath of politicians as well as pontiffs who have questioned the state government’s decision. In fact, some of the front runners for this position have also shown their displeasure over the appointment. 

Pontiff of Visakhapatnam-based Sarada Peetham, Swamy Swaroopananda questioned the government’s decision and asked how a man without the knowledge of Agama Sastra or the Telugu language could be allowed to head the institution. He also hinted that he might approach the court to annul this appointment, The New Indian Express reported.

Jana Sena chief and movie star, Pawan Kalyan also criticised the decision and tweeted that though he is not against the appointment of north Indian IAS officials but questioned that, will north Indian shrines would allow south Indian officials as head of their holy shrines? He also mentioned that the state CM owes an answer for the people of the state. 

 

 

This tweet drew a sharp reaction from the ruling Telugu Desam Party leaders. MLC YVB Rajendra Prasad and Housing Corporation chairman Varla Ramaia, reportedly stated that the Jana Sena chief should know the meaning of IAS before tweeting, the same report stated. While transport minister K Atchannaidu called it a non-issue. 

In fact, the proposal of the new appointment itself drew much controversy and criticism earlier. The proposal was opposed on the basis that the EO of TTD should be someone who understands the Hindu culture and that for a north Indian it is difficult to understand the conventions of the holy institution. Many also contended that language barrier will be a great difficulty for a person who is non-native.