Tirupati, Feb 22 :
The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam, which manages the affairs of the famous Lord Venkateswara temple atop Tirumala hills here, Saturday approved Rs.2,401 crore budget for 2014-15.
TTD chairman K. Bapiraju told reporters after the meeting that they expect Rs.900 crore as offerings by devotees in the ‘hundi’ or offering box. The temple body expects Rs.655 crore as interest on its money and other valuables deposited in national banks.
Bapiraju, who is also a MP, said the sale of human hair would fetch Rs.220 crore this fiscal against Rs.200 crore last year. The TTD expects to earn another Rs.190 crore though sale of ‘Darsanam’ tickets, Rs.130 crore through sale of ‘prasadam’ and Rs.108 crore through rentals.
The payment of salaries and wages to about 9,000 staff was expected to be a major outgo of about Rs.400 crore. Another Rs.155 crore crore projected as outsourcing expenses.
The TTD allocated Rs.109 crore for propagation of ‘Hindu Dharma’, Rs.88 crore towards education, and Rs.92 crore for health and sanitation. It will spend Rs.52 crore on vigilance and security and Rs.56 crore for developing hospitals run by it.
The richest Hindu temple in the world has over 2,000 kg gold donated by pilgrims. The gold is deposited with a national bank.
Over 50,000 pilgrims from different parts of India and abroad visit the hill shrine every day and this number crosses 100,000 on special occasions. Many of the devotees get their heads tonsured on fulfilment of their vows.